MOSCOW, February 14. /TASS/. Washington’s move to leave the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty may destroy the entire global security architecture and spark a new arms race, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said in an interview with the Komsomolskaya Pravda daily.
"The decision to suspend the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty may have serious consequences for the entire global security architecture and spark a new arms race," he said.
INF Treaty issue
The INF Treaty, signed by the Soviet Union and the United States on December 8, 1987, took effect on June 1, 1988. It applies to deployed and non-deployed ground-based missiles of intermediate range (1,000-5,000 kilometers) and shorter range (500-1,000 kilometers). Washington on many occasions accused Russia of violating the Treaty but Moscow strongly dismissed all accusations and expressed grievances concerning Washington’s non-compliance.
On February 1, US President Donald Trump and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo announced the suspension of Washington’s obligations under the INF Treaty starting February 2. Washington is determined to withdraw from the Treaty in six months unless Russia returns to "real and verifiable" compliance.
On February 2, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Moscow was also suspending the Treaty. He handed down instructions to refrain from initiating talks with Washington on the issue and stressed that the US needed to show readiness for an equal and substantive dialogue.