U.S. pulls out of cold war-era nuclear arms treaty
February 2, 2019 -- The U.S. is suspending its compliance with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty with Russia, raising the spectre of a dangerous and costly arms race in Europe.
The Trump administration says The U.S. will withdraw from the landmark 1987 arms control accord in six months if Moscow does not end its alleged violation of the pact.
The United States alleges that a new Russian cruise missile violates the pact. The missile, the Novator 9M729, is known as the SSC-8 by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Russia denies the allegation, saying the missile’s range puts it outside the treaty, and has accused the United States of inventing a false pretext to exit a treaty Washington wants to leave anyway so it can develop new missiles. Russia has also rejected a U.S. demand to destroy the new missile.
The treaty, signed in 1987 by then-President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, banned an entire class of weapons: ground-launched cruise missiles with a range between 500 and 5,000km.