MOSCOW, March 4. /TASS/. The suspension of Russia’s obligations under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, does not mean that Moscow is giving up, Chairman of the Federation Council's Foreign Affairs Committee Konstantin Kosachev wrote on his official Facebook account on Monday.
Earlier on Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree suspending Moscow’s compliance with the INF Treaty, the Kremlin press service said in a statement. The decree enters into force on the day of signing.
"I am sure that — unless forced to do so — Russia will not to aim its missiles at European targets, command and decision-making centers in the US, which is what Putin spoke about," Kosachev said.
He pointed out that Russia was only suspending its obligations under the INF Treaty and not terminating the document. "Russia is not giving up and hopes that our Western counterparts will show common sense though it has been a futile hope in recent years. Do missiles have to be deployed for the European public to wake up like it did in the 1980s? An anti-war movement did a miracle then and the hope for a miracle (when there is nothing else left to hope for) dies last," the Russian official noted.
According to him, by signing the decree, the Russian president only did what he had vowed to do. "Until the very last moment, Russia was trying to preserve the Treaty, calling for an open dialogue on its future and even allowing military experts and journalists to see the controversial missile the US talked about when giving reasons for its withdrawal. Alas, at some stage it became obvious that Russia was not the real reason, and the US simply wanted to pull out of the Treaty," Kosachev wrote, adding that Russia could do nothing about that, while Washington’s NATO allies were unwilling to take any steps, so "as a result, they have left Europe without a most important document on nuclear arms control."