Putin’s mirror response to US departure from INF treaty

Russia will not deploy before the US does, our proposals remain, but there will be no new ones.

Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov, Putin, Defense Minister Shoigu
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Russia suspends participation in the INF.
Russian President Vladimir Putin instructs not to initiate any further negotiations on this issue.
MOSCOW, February 2. / TASS /. Russian President Vladimir Putin, at a meeting with the ministers of defense and foreign affairs Sergei Shoigu and Sergey Lavrov, announced the suspension of Russia’s participation in the Treaty on the Elimination of Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles (INF)
“Our response will be a mirror,” the president said. “The American partners announced that they were suspending their participation in the contract, and we are suspending,” Putin announced.
Termination of the initiation of negotiations
Putin also gave instructions to stop attempts to initiate negotiations on the INF Treaty, noting that Russia’s proposals “remain on the table” and “the doors for negotiations are open.”
“I ask both departments [of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Defense] not to initiate any negotiations on this issue in the future,” the head of state said. According to him, it is better to wait, “until our partners [the United States] mature” for an “equal and substantive dialogue.”
The President recalled that Moscow has been raising the issue of negotiations on disarmament topics for many years, but the partners do not support Russian initiatives. “On the contrary, all the time, some pretexts are sought for dismantling the already established system of international security,” Putin said.
Russia will not be drawn into the arms race
According to the president, Russia, after the suspension of participation in the treaty, will create new weapons, but without increasing the budget of the Ministry of Defense.

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“We should not and will not be drawn into an arms race for us that would be costly for us” he stressed. Putin heard Shoigu’s report on the subject: Shoigu, assured that the work will be carried out without an increase in the budget. And replied: “Excellent.”

The head of state also noted that Russia will not deploy medium-range and shorter-range missiles in regions of the world before such weapons are deployed by the United States.
In conclusion, Putin asked Lavrov and Shoigu to “carefully observe what will happen and promptly report proposals for our reaction to the events.”

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