Trump has suspended America's nuclear treaty with Russian Federation

NATO says Russian Federation is in breach of a key Cold War-era nuclear treaty, and the Western military alliance is urging Moscow to come back into compliance during the six months that remain before the United States abandons the pact.

Pompeo said on February 1 that Moscow has refused to take any steps to comply with the requests.

The ministry's spokeswoman Maria Zakharova also stated that Moscow is surprised that the U.S. still questions the transparency of Russia's actions under the INF Treaty, adding that Washington has failed to present any evidence proving alleged Russian violations of the accord, "apart from Tweets".

The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, Treaty has been central to limiting the kinds of nuclear weapons both countries can deploy, and without it, experts fear there will be a new nuclear arms race.

If Russia doesn't return to full compliance of the treaty within six months, the treaty will be terminated.

"There's a lot of discussion about China", this official said, briefing reporters on the suspension. "Russian Federation has jeopardized the United States' security interests, and we can no longer be restricted by the treaty while Russian Federation shamelessly violates it". Leaving the treaty with Russian Federation would allow the United States to counter the Chinese, but it's unclear how the Pentagon might try to do that.

The US argues that Russian Federation has jeopardised the INF treaty for years by deploying ground-launched missiles that fall within the banned range of 500km to 5,500km.

The United States is expected to announce it will suspend compliance with a key Cold War weapons treaty, most likely on February 1, over its accusations that Russian Federation is not meeting its obligations.

"It is important that disarmament and the worldwide arms control architecture are put back on the global agenda", German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said.

A few hours before Pompeo's announcement, the NATO Western security alliance issued a statement saying it would "fully support" the US withdrawal notice.

"We are sometime away from having a system that we have produced, that we would train soldiers or airmen or Marines to deploy, and then certainly before we would be in a position to talk about basing, potentially in allied countries. and of course all that will be proceeded by intensive consultations with allies so that we can have a mutual understanding of what the security environment, what the defense and deterrence environment will be in a post INF world", the official said.

Moscow, for its part, has maintained that its ground-launched cruise missile known as the 9M729 does not violate the agreement.

A senior U.S. administration official denied Beijing is a factor.

U.S. Under Secretary of State Andrea Thompson, left, and Director General of the Department of Arms Control and Disarmament of the Chinese Foreign Ministry Fu Cong attend a panel discussion after a Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) conference in Beijing, China, Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019. They met on the sidelines of a meeting of the U.N. Security Council's five permanent members - the United States, Russia, China, France and Britain - all nuclear powers.

"Blowing up the treaty risks the proliferation of nuclear-capable systems by Russian Federation, threatening Europe and jeopardizing decades of bipartisan efforts to reduce nuclear dangers with Russian Federation", he warned.

"Russia continues to deny its violations. They have been violating it for many years", Trump said in October.

  • Rogelio Becker