Russian DM says new anti-US missiles must be developed

Minnie Murray
February 6, 2019

The U.S. thinks that the 9M729 land-based cruise missile developed and deployed by Russian Federation violates the accord. In the early years of this historic treaty, both sides collectively destroyed more than 2,600 missiles.

Treaty signed by President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Union General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev in 1987 was also a sign of the waning interest of the world's two nuclear superpowers in arms-control agreements more broadly. Now, China and others such as Pakistan, India, and North Korea, are thought to have such capability-and they are not bound by the INF treaty.

Technically, a U.S. withdrawal would take effect six months after this week's notification, leaving a small window for saving the treaty.

The US State Department said in a statement on Saturday that the United States could not be restricted by the treaty while Russian Federation violated it.

The mission comes with Europe increasingly anxious about security as tensions rise between Washington and Moscow. As early as 2004, senior Russian officials were sounding out whether the US wanted mutually to get out of the treaty.

Shoigu made the statement following a meeting with Putin over the weekend, at which the Russian leader instructed the military to work on developing new land-based weapons that were previously forbidden by the INF treaty. Russian Federation denied the accusations, maintaining that the tests were done in strict accordance with the agreement. This is what the US worries about. "As is known, the INF Treaty gave a start to the process of nuclear disarmament".

"If US missiles are deployed in Poland or the Baltic states, they'll be able to reach Russian Federation in minutes". With the US maintaining the military upper hand, China places importance on a variety of cruise and ballistic missiles capable of hitting American aircraft carriers or military bases in Guam in the western Pacific and Japan.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the treaty would terminate in six months unless Russian Federation accepts US demands that it verifiably destroy the cruise missiles that Washington claims are in violation. In contrast, the USA has responded in detail to these false Russian claims, demonstrating that we diligently comply with our treaty obligations in full. His signature is all over the INF Treaty withdrawal, just as it was with Trump's willful violation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA, or the "Iran Deal") in 2018.

"I agree with the proposal... to create a ground-based hypersonic mid-range missile", President Vladimir Putin during a meeting with the nation's defense chief and foreign minister on Saturday.

Instead of pulling out of the agreement it could have asked Russian Federation for holding more comprehensive talks. The decision comes in response to the USA halting its participation in the agreement.

But Russia says it is the U.S. that has broken the pact, and says Washington is using false allegations as a pretext to withdraw from a pact it never wanted to be part of. Mr Shoigu said: "In 2019-2020, we need to develop the ground-based version of the sea-launched Kalibr system with the long-range cruise missile, which has proven its worth in Syria". We continue to believe this is the case.

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