NATO chief says missile pact in danger after Russia talks

Combined Shape

BRUSSELS (AP) — NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg warned Friday that Russia shows no sign of respecting a major Cold War-era missile treaty and that the future of the pact is in danger as the United States readies to start pulling out of it next week.

“The treaty is now in jeopardy and unfortunately we have not seen any signs of (a) breakthrough,” Stoltenberg told reporters after chairing NATO-Russia talks in Brussels.

The 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty between the United States and the Soviet Union bans production, testing and deployment of land-based cruise and ballistic missiles with a range of 500-5,500 kilometers (310-3,400 miles).

The Pentagon has shared information with NATO allies asserting that Russia’s new 9M729 missile system falls within the treaty. It believes the ground-fired cruise missile could give Moscow the ability to launch a nuclear strike in Europe with little or no notice. Moscow insists the missile has a range of less than 500 kilometers.

In October, President Donald Trump warned that the U.S. would abandon the treaty because of alleged Russian violations. If Moscow doesn’t return to compliance, Washington is due to start the six-month process of leaving the pact from Feb. 2.

Trending:
Here's Who Qualifies for Government to Pay for Their Internet

“The responsibility to preserve the treaty lies on Russia because Russia is now violating the treaty by developing and deploying new missiles,” Stoltenberg said.

“These new missiles are hard to detect. They are mobile. They are nuclear capable. They can reach European cities and they reduce the warning time, and thereby also the threshold, for any potential use of nuclear weapons in a conflict,” he warned.

Asked what Moscow’s attitude had been during Friday’s talks, Stoltenberg said: “There was no real progress in the meeting because Russia did not indicate any willingness to change their position.”

Nevertheless, he urged Russia to return to compliance over the next week and failing that, during the six-month period it would take the U.S. to leave the INF treaty.

Stoltenberg rejected Russian claims that U.S. Predator drones and ballistic missiles used for target practice violate the INF.

“Russia continues to raise this issue to deflect attention from the real issue,” he said. “There are no new U.S. missiles in Europe, but there are new Russian missiles in Europe.”

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →






We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Tags:
Combined Shape
The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands.
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
Location
New York City




Conversation