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INF treaty suspension enables Russia to develop new arms and boost national security – Moscow

INF treaty suspension enables Russia to develop new arms and boost national security – Moscow
Withdrawal from the INF treaty will give Russia breathing space to develop the weaponry that suits its security priorities, Russia’s top senator says, as president Putin submits a bill on Moscow’s suspension of the nuclear pact.

Valentina Matvienko, who chairs the Federation Council, made a statement shortly after president Vladimir Putin had submitted to parliament a draft resolution on Moscow’s suspension of the key Cold War era agreement. The move came as Washington unilaterally pulled out of the INF treaty back in February.

We were forced to react this way under the conditions we were put in.

The official insisted that Russia has made a decision that is “absolutely right,” as it allows the country’s armed forces to acquire new weapons that would “match the national interests of Russia” in order “not to fall behind if our partners will move differently in this direction.”

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Pulling out of the INF will enable Russia to develop arms previously forbidden by the treaty’s terms, specifically land-based cruise and ballistic missiles with ranges between 500 and 5,500 km.

Washington had earlier accused Moscow of testing the 9M729 missile, which allegedly exceeds the permitted range. That claim was refuted by Kremlin, which retorted that the US has been testing drones whose characteristics fail to comply with the treaty. Officials in Russia also asserted that Americans are installing MK 41 launching systems in some European countries and Japan in violation of the agreement.

Also on rt.com Russia suspends INF Treaty in ‘mirror response’ to US halting the agreement

The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty was signed by Mikhail Gorbachev and Ronald Reagan in 1987 and since then had remained a key pillar of European security. Washington is set to formally terminate the agreement in August.

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