US Talk of Exit From Nuclear Treaty With Russia Could Blow Up in New Arms Race, Sputnik News, 30 June 17, Last week, US media reported that the Trump administration was considering withdrawing from the 1987 Treaty on Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, citing alleged non-compliance by Moscow. White House officials have denied that the US is considering withdrawing. Russian experts explain why doing so would be a major lose-lose scenario for both powers.

Last week, Politico reported that leading Republican congressmen were urging the Trump administration to withdraw from the INF Treaty, a document signed by Moscow and Washington in 1987 which prohibits the development, deployment and testing of ground-launched nuclear ballistic and cruise missiles which have a range of between 500-5,500 km.

The Senators claimed that Russia was in “material breach of the treaty,” something Moscow has vehemently denied. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has repeatedly said that Russia is in full compliance with the treaty, adding that Moscow has its own concerns about US compliance. Moscow has also called on Washington to engage in discussions on the points of contention regarding the arms control agreement’s implementation.

Although Trump administration special assistant on counterproliferation Christopher Ford has since clarified to Sputnik that the White House does not want to withdraw from the INF Treaty, continued murmurings about Washington’s possible unilateral disengagement have sparked fears of a new nuclear arms race. The Russian Foreign Ministry has said that it could not rule out a unilateral US withdrawal, while experts have warned that such a step would lead to heightened military tensions in Europe…….