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NATO wants Russia to address suspected missile treaty breach


Brussels   –      NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, on Tuesday, called on Russia to address long-running concerns about a new missile system that appears to be in breach of its international treaty obligations.

“In 1987, the U.S and the Soviet Union signed a deal pledging to eliminate all short-range and intermediate-range nuclear and conventional missiles, as well as their launchers.

“Now this treaty is in danger because of Russia’s actions,” Stoltenberg said.

In March, the U.S. accused Moscow of violating the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, after Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled an “invincible” intercontinental missile and torpedo.

Moscow denies that it is in breach of the treaty.

“Russia has not provided any credible answers on this new missile.

“All allies agree that the most plausible assessment would be that Russia is in violation of the Treaty.

“It is therefore urgent that Russia addresses these concerns in a substantial and transparent manner,” Stoltenberg said.

The issue is expected to feature at a meeting of NATO defence ministers in Brussels on Wednesday and Thursday.

The U.S. ambassador to NATO, Kay Hutchison, warned that America could ultimately be compelled to take action to eliminate the threat posed by the new Russian missile system.

“Getting them to withdraw would be our choice, of course.

“However, if Russia reached the point where it was capable of launching an attack, “we would then be looking at the capability to take out a missile that could hit any of our countries in Europe and hit America,” Hutchison said.

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