In a stabilizing move, Putin presents new law to deal with end of U.S-Russia INF Treaty

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MOSCOW – A new law presented by the Russian president grants him the right to decide on the renewal of the Treaty on Medium and Short Range Missiles, known as the INF treaty.

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The President of Russia , Vladimir Putin , presented Thursday to the State Duma (lower house of parliament) a bill on the suspension of the Treaty on Medium and Short Range Missiles.

“Within an hour, the Council of the State Duma will discuss this bill and determine the deadlines for its consideration,” announced House Speaker Viacheslav Volodin.

The bill introduced by Putin grants the Russian head of state the right to decide on the renewal of the missile treaty.

The Treaty on Medium and Short Range Missiles (INF) was signed in 1987 by Washington and Moscow. USA decided to unilaterally abandon the treaty last February.

When the US left, Russia also suspended its participation in the treaty in March, and demanded that Washington present evidence about the alleged Russian violation of the terms of that agreement.

The Russian Foreign Ministry warned Washington in March of “the most serious consequences” for its security and global stability will mean its withdrawal from the INF Treaty, as it could lead to the start of “an arms race in several regions of the world.”

On February 2nd, the US suspended its obligations under the treaty, alleging its vulnerability after accusing  Russia of the secret development of a missile system that threatens US security and its allies.

Putin decided to respond with the suspension of Russia’s part of the treaty, until the United States returns to fulfill its obligations, in addition to demanding evidence of the accusations that the American president made.

The INF was established between Russia and the USA. since 1987. This prohibits the possession, production or testing of cruise missiles that have a range of 450 to 5,600 kilometers. The Treaty has been a fundamental part of the control of the proliferation of nuclear weapons. Its unilateral suspension by the United States reflected a continual erosion of U.S-Russia relations within the context of this New Cold War. 
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