Putin threatens arms race if U.S. dumps nuclear treaty

Putin threatens arms race if U.S. dumps nuclear treaty

NATO has backed up the Trump administration's argument, agreeing that Russian Federation is in violation of the treaty while Washington continues to adhere to it.

If Russia is serious about preserving the treaty, the release added, it should discuss USA concerns over the 9M729 missile system.

"In the light of these facts, the U.S. declares Russian Federation in material breach of the treaty and will suspend our obligations. effective in 60 days unless Russian Federation returns to full and verifiable compliance", Mr Pompeo said.

"The Trump Administration deserves tremendous credit for working closely with North Atlantic Treaty Organisation to deliver a strong, united message that the days of turning a blind eye to Russian violations of global agreements are over".

Putin's remarks to Russian news agencies on Wednesday came a day after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced at a NATO meeting that Washington will suspend its obligations under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) in 60 days, citing Russian "cheating".

She turned to her colleagues on the other side of the aisle and asked for their support.

President Donald Trump earlier this year announced his decision to withdraw from the INF, accusing Russian Federation and China - which is not a signatory to the treaty - of violating it. "It makes no sense for the United States to remain in a treaty that constrains our ability to respond to Russia's violations".

Mr Gerasimov said U.S. plans to leave the arms control treaty could only have a negative impact global strategic stability.




"The real situation is that since 2000 Russian Federation has been calling on Washington to stop the practice of using target-missiles, simulating ballistic missiles of intermediate and shorter range when testing the anti-ballistic missile system, what is prohibited by the treaty".

DW's correspondent at NATO Teri Schultz said the United States had allowed the 60-day concession in response to European concerns over an immediate withdrawal and followed direct intervention by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

NATO leadership should explore Russia's invitation to review proposals to prevent the collapse of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, the US Arms Control Association (ACA) said in a press release.

The prospect of U.S. missiles on European soil is a concern for states including Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, whose representatives have urged Mr Pompeo to continue with diplomacy in fear of a European arms race.

The bilateral treaty between Washington and Moscow banned all land-based cruise and ballistic missiles with a range between 310 and 3,410 miles.

Mr Pompeo signalled that, after the 60-day period, Washington would increase its presence in Europe to restore military balance, but declined to give more details. "We hope that they'll change course, but there's been absolutely no indication that they'll do so". "No evidence to support this American position has ever been presented to us".

Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said the US ultimatum was an "escalation of the situation".

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