MOSCOW, September 19. /TASS/. Russia is committed to all its international obligations, including as part of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF Treaty), Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Tuesday.
The Kremlin spokesman commented on the latest decision of the US Senate allowing Washington not to implement some articles of the Russian-US INF Treaty.
"We need to understand what this means and to analyze this information. I don’t have any details and I would prefer not to speak about this. But Russia meets all its international commitments," Peskov said.
On Monday, the US Senate approved a bill authorizing $700 bln in military spending in 2018, including on weapons for Ukraine and increasing US missile defense. The Congress claims that Russia is in violation of its obligations under the INF Treaty, a 1987 nuclear arms control accord between the United States and the Soviet Union.
The bill says that "the United States is legally entitled to suspend the operation of the INF Treaty in whole or in part for so long as the Russian Federation continues to be in material breach." A total of 89 senators backed the decision and another eight voted against.
The bill says that no later than 15 months after the date of the enactment of this act, the US president shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report. The document should determine whether Russia "has flight-tested, produced, or is in possession of a ground-launched cruise missile or ground-launched ballistic missile with a range of between 500 and 5,500 kilometers."
If the president determines in this report that Russia "has flight-tested, produced, or is in possession" of any such missile "the prohibitions set forth in Article VI of the INF Treaty shall no longer be binding on the United States as a matter of United States law." The article prohibits the parties to "produce or flight-test any intermediate-range missiles or produce any stages of such missiles or any launchers of such missiles; or produce, flight-test or launch any shorter-range missiles or produce any stages of such missiles or any launchers of such missiles."
"None of the funds authorized to be appropriated or otherwise made available for fiscal year 2018 for the Department of Defense may be obligated or expended to extend the implementation of the New START Treaty unless the President certifies to the appropriate congressional committees that the Russian Federation has verifiably eliminated all missiles that are in violation of or may be inconsistent with the INF Treaty," the document says.
Some $50 mln will be allocated for the Pentagon for "the development of active defenses to counter ground-launched missile systems with ranges between 500 and 5,500 kilometers" and "counterforce capabilities to prevent attacks from these missiles."