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Leonid Slutsky: End of INF Treaty can lead to a very serious crisis in the control of nuclear arsenals

Leonid Slutsky, Chairman of the State Duma Committee on International Affairs:

“President Trump’s statement that the United States is going to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty lays a huge mine on the entire disarmament process on the planet. And the repeated accusations of Russia in violation of the INF Treaty are just a screen to justify their own actions to consistently destroy this treaty. Again, no evidence is provided of the alleged non-compliance by the Russian side of its obligations under the INF. Because they are no. However, there are enough counterclaims to the United States regarding the implementation of the Treaty.

But for now, this is still a statement of intent. And, as Western media write, it was announced by Trump on the eve of the visit of his national security adviser John Bolton to Moscow. It is possible that this is a certain kind of maneuver or bargaining element.

The conclusion of the treaty in the late 80s of the last century was one of the key steps in ending the Cold War. Its elimination could lead to a very serious crisis in the control of nuclear arsenals, once again returning the world to the threshold of an arms race and atomic war. The prolongation of START-3 may also be questionable.

I think that American politics they are clearly aware of this. Therefore, I hope that the diplomatic potential in this area has not yet been fully exhausted. But, if after all Washington withdraws from the INF Treaty, as they did in the case of the Iranian nuclear deal, Russia has a full range of measures to ensure its own and its allies’ security”.

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