MOSCOW, August 2. /TASS/. Moscow is inviting the United States and NATO to declare a moratorium on deployment of intermediate-range and shorter-range missiles as Russia did, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said in an interview with TASS.
Speaking about the restitution of participation to the agreements on control over such systems, the diplomat underlined that "nobody is taking the issue of agreements off the table." "We are not inviting the Americans to new talks, the Russian president was clear about it on February 2 this year," Ryabkov underlined. "We invited the US and other NATO countries to assess the possibility of declaring the same moratorium on deploying intermediate-range and shorter-range equipment as we have, the same moratorium Vladimir Putin declared, saying that Russia will refrain from deploying these systems when we acquire them unless the American equipment is deployed in certain regions."
On February 2, the US suspended its obligations under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF Treaty). The American administration also threatened to exit the treaty in six months if Moscow did not comply with the demands allegedly arising from the treaty. Washington primarily insists that Russia eliminate the new 9M729 cruise missiles, because the US believes that its range exceeds the parameters allowed by the treaty. Following the US decision, Russia also suspended its participation in the INF Treaty.
The treaty becomes null and void on August 2.