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Russia ready to discuss INF-banned missiles deployment moratorium with France

In his message to the Western World leaders, Putin called for a mutual moratorium, according to the top diplomat

MUNICH, February 17. /TASS/. Russia would negotiate the moratorium on intermediate and shorter-range missiles deployment with France, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told journalists.

Following Washington’s unilateral abandonment of the Intermediate and Shorter-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, Russian President Vladimir Putin sent detailed letters to all Western leaders, in which he outlined Russia’s assessment of the situation and called on the foreign leaders to prevent the agreements on these types of nuclear forces from disappearing, the minister recalled.

The president noted that Russia declared a moratorium on deployment of intermediate and shorter-range missiles until Washington deploys such missiles in any region of the world.

"In his message to the Western World leaders, [the president] called for a mutual moratorium," Lavrov underscored.

"None of Putin’s recipients, besides [French President Emmanuel Macron] noticed that, in his message, [Putin] expressed readiness to discuss possible verification vehicles for such mutual moratorium. Macron, on the other hand, did notice it, and expressed his interest in this kind of dialogue. As you understand yourself, we will, of course, discuss these topics with the French," the minister noted.