Russia Ready to Suspend INF Treaty After U.S. Previously Withdrew, Accused Russia of Violations

  • Russia is readying itself to suspend the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty after the U.S. accused Russia of violating conditions and withdrew from it.
  • The treaty was signed in 1987 by the U.S. and the former USSR, which “eliminated nuclear and conventional ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles with ranges of 500 to 5,500 kilometers.”
  • This was the first time the two nations signed such an agreement that not only introduced on-site inspections to verify compliance but also removed a whole category of nuclear arms.
  • The treaty had problems since it “didn’t affect aircraft- and sea-based missiles, an area where the US had a clear strategic advantage at the time, so it was widely seen as a gesture of goodwill by the USSR at a cost to its own national security.”
  • Additionally, other countries like China, the UK and France weren’t included in the INF although they each had nuclear arms.
  • The U.S. claims that Russia “has been secretly developing intermediate-range missiles, in particular, those that can allegedly be fired from the tactical missile system Iskander-M, deployed along the country’s western borders.”
  • On the other hand, Russia has accused America “of violating the treaty by placing standardized ground-based Aegis Ashore anti-missile launchers in Europe that can be used to fire cruise missiles.”
  • The Trump administration halted the INF in February.

Reference Links

  • RT: What’s INF & why does it matter? READ
  • Tass: Putin submits INF Treaty suspension bill to State Duma READ
  • Unian: Russia’s State Duma to review Putin’s bill on suspension of INF Treaty on June 18 READ

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