MOSCOW. Putin’s address to the permanent members of the Security Council of the Russian Federation came with strong assertions about its position vis-à-vis Washington’s formal withdrawal from the INF treaty. Putin’s speech came five days after the United States made a test launch of a ground-based cruise missile which, according to the US military, hit the target at a distance over 500 kilometres. According to Putin, the testing of a missile with characteristics prohibited under this treaty taking place just 16 days after Washington’s own denunciation, was obvious not to be an improvisation but the next link in a chain of events that were planned and carried out earlier. The speech was an important indicator about Russia’s position for the future and a planned Russian reciprocal response.
– Drago Victorien