Published: Tue, October 30, 2018
World News | By Sandy Lane

Mattis says in close contact with European allies on INF treaty

Mattis says in close contact with European allies on INF treaty

The Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs expressed concern over the USA intent to withdraw from the INF Treaty.

WASHINGTON - A Pennsylvania gunman alleged to have killed 11 people at a synagogue in Pittsburgh Saturday has been charged with 29 counts of violence and firearms offenses, according to US federal prosecutors. I might say for the context involved here, this is not a subject that arose yesterday.

"We reiterate that Russian Federation is strictly observing the clauses of the treaty", Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a briefing.

Russian Federation said on Monday (22 October) it would be forced to respond in kind to restore the military balance with the United States if President Donald Trump carried through on a threat to quit a nuclear arms treaty and began developing new missiles. But when it comes to countering their nuclear advances and their increasingly innovative use of cyberconflict to outmaneuver their adversaries, Trump's long-term strategy remains a mystery - beyond promises to match every military buildup, and strike back hard. "The Russian Federations is preparing for war, and the United States of America is preparing for a war".

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Moscow, for years, has ignored the accusations, before admitting that the missile system exists and demanding that Washington prove that the system violates the treaty.

With the INF Treaty in jeopardy, fears are now rising that the New START Treaty will die as it expires in 2021. The threat of deployment of intermediate-range missiles in Asia could change the dynamics of those negotiations. The INF Treaty is not the first victim of the militarization of world affairs. Leaving the treaty would be a huge step backward.

The United States is seeking to block a move by Russian Federation to schedule a United Nations General Assembly vote on preserving a 1987 nuclear arms treaty that U.S. President Donald Trump vowed to abandon this week.

Mikhail Gorbachev, the final leader of the former Soviet Union, has warned President Trump against withdrawing from a nuclear arms control agreement made near the end of the Cold War between Moscow and the Reagan administration. And Trump's decision will have important political consequences in both capitals. Moscow has expressed interest in resolving the disputes through talks, while Washington has preferred not to meet, leading to Trump's current actions.

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NATO's European members support the plan.

But the European reaction has been disorganized. "We have got to continue to use that and to keep that alive", Jim Townsend, a transatlantic security expert at the Center for a New American Security, told Business Insider this week. Because of the treaty, almost 3,000 of these missiles were destroyed by both sides, disproportionately more by the USSR than by the US. Russian Federation points out that the U.S.is acting outside the agreement signed in 1987, placing elements of its global anti-missile defense system in European countries, closer to Russian Federation, with dual-use launch ramps. "We're going to terminate the agreement, and we're going to pull out".

But missile treaties are not like NAFTA, the trade agreement Trump criticized and then renegotiated with Mexico and Canada. "We will go back to Pershings in Europe", referring to the late 1970s, when the Brzezinski regime under Jimmy Carter sought to have North Atlantic Treaty Organisation deploy intermediate-range Pershing II missiles in Western Europe.

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