6 questions about an arms control treaty on the rocks

6 questions about an arms control treaty on the rocks

Beijing is not a signatory to the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), so it's Russian Federation that has been singled out for violating the accord, signed in 1987 by Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev.

Bolton traveled to Moscow this week to deliver that message.

Moreover, it showed that the Untied States wanted to re-align its relationship with Russian Federation, O'Connell said.

Mr Bolton, speaking to reporters after his talks with Mr Putin, said Mr Trump would like to meet the Russian president in Paris and that precise arrangements were being worked on. Trump said in a speech on Saturday that Russian Federation has violated it and that is why the US should withdraw.

He alluded to the US coat of arms, which shows an eagle holding a bundle of 13 arrows in one talon and an olive branch with 13 olives in another. Putin asked with a laugh.

Trump has also pointed out that the INF Treaty never affected the behavior of the United States' other major nuclear-armed competitor: China.

The NATO chief also said that the United States was in full compliance with the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty and that Russia's decision to develop what he said was a ground-launched SSC-8 cruise missile meant that the treaty was no longer "effective".

In response, the Kremlin has rejected a suggestion that Trump's decision could pave the way for a new treaty.

Stoltenberg blamed Russian Federation for violating the treaty by developing the Novator 9M729, a land-based cruise missile which violates the ranges spelled out the in the 1987 treaty. "It is actually a declaration of an intention to get involved in an arms race and increase the potential of armaments", Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a daily briefing.

What is in the INF Treaty? .

He added: "We have no ground-based capability that can threaten China because of, among other things, our rigid adherence - and rightfully so - to the treaty that we signed on to, the INF treaty".

Mr Stoltenberg was speaking after US President Donald Trump said on Monday he was ready to build up the US nuclear arsenal in response to Russia's SSC-8 missile programme (known in Russian Federation as the 9M729). Moscow is also certain to blame the USA for the death of a treaty it claims to still honor.

"So the door would be wide open for, potentially, a new arms race", the expert added.

Why does the treaty matter for Europe?

"The President believes that the next bilateral meeting with President Putin should take place after the Russian Federation witch hunt is over, so we've agreed that it will be after the first of the year", Bolton said in a statement at the time. Such a move would be a repeat of a Cold War showdown in the 1980s, when the USA and the Soviet Union both deployed intermediate-range missiles on the continent, the Russian leader said.

Trump's move has caused a mixed reaction among US allies. Britain has voiced support, while Germany expressed concern, saying it touches on core European interests. "But I don't foresee that allies will station more nuclear weapons in Europe as a response to the new Russian missile". According to the U.S. Department of Defense, Chinese leaders seem committed to increasing such spending even as its economy slows. "Indeed, what was the formal pretext of our partners withdrawing from the [Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces] agreement?" "We have paid attention to the relevant statement made by US President Donald Trump and his adviser John Bolton regarding China in the context of the INF treaty", ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said in a daily press briefing on Tuesday.

Far-right governments in Hungary and Italy - both members of the European Union and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation - have recently expressed a desire to end sanctions imposed on Russian Federation after its annexation of Crimea in order to reap economic benefits.



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