Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the US withdrawal from the agreement on the elimination of intermediate and shorter-range missiles (INF Treaty) could lead to an unchecked arms race. The corresponding statement was published on the website of the President of the Russian Federation.
Putin said that the Russian Federation blames the termination of the missile agreement solely on the United States.
“In our opinion, US actions that led to the liquidation of the Intermediate-Range Shorter Missile Treaty will inevitably entail devaluation, undermining of the entire supporting structure of global security, including the Strategic Arms Weapons Treaty and the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons. Such a scenario means the resumption of an unrestrained arms race, “said the Russian leader.
After a meeting with members of the Security Council, he instructed the defense and diplomatic departments, as well as the Foreign Intelligence Service, to closely monitor the actions of the United States in the development, production and deployment of missiles, which were prohibited by the Treaty, which had expired.
In the event that reliable information is received that the United States has begun production of medium- and shorter-range missile systems, Russia will begin full-scale development of similar weapons, Putin added.
Earlier, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that the alliance did not want to start a new arms race.
On August 2, the US and the Russian Federation withdrew from the agreement on the elimination of medium and short-range missiles. NATO declared Russia’s exclusive responsibility for the termination of the treaty According to many experts, the situation threatens the start of a new Cold War.