Soviet Policy on Conventional Force Reductions

  • Roy Allison


The Soviet Union is committed through the November 1990 Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty, unilateral declarations, and bilateral accords with Eastern European states to a very substantial reduction in its conventional military arsenal in Europe and to the withdrawal of most if not all of its military forces stationed abroad. In itself this is a revolutionary programme. But Soviet conventional forces remaining within the frontiers of the USSR are also likely to be significantly restructured beyond CFE requirements in the early 1990s. In the first half of the decade the Soviet military reduction is likely to remain a combination of unilateral and multilateral negotiated efforts, although the balance between the two approaches may be tipped in favour of the former. Unilateral Soviet reductions in Europe are underwritten by the CFE Treaty, although this treaty postponed the issue of military personnel, and unilateral cuts intended for the future in the USSR may be locked into additional East-West agreements. A comprehensive regime of verification and monitoring should be established on Soviet territory, alongside other confidence and security building measures, which will further reinforce stability in Europe.


German Democratic Republic Force Reduction Soviet Leader Soviet Policy Force Withdrawal 
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© International Council for Soviet and East European Studies and Roy Allison 1992

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  • Roy Allison

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