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NATO Countries Rejected Russia's Proposals on INF Treaty Too Hastily, Russian FM Spokeswoman Says

Sputnik News

16:03 GMT 29.10.2020

MOSCOW (Sputnik) - NATO countries too hastily rejected the proposal of Russian President Vladimir Putin on Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF Treaty), Moscow characterises the situation in the missile sector as a crisis, and the United States is fully responsible for it, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said.

"I would like to draw your attention to how hastily some European NATO members, without even going into the essence of the Russian proposals, rejected them", Zakharova said at a briefing.

She noted that Moscow characterised the situation in the missile sphere as a crisis.

"And the United States and its NATO allies, who unconditionally support Washington, bear full responsibility for it", the spokeswoman emphasised.

Russia calls on NATO to carefully study the proposal for intermediate- and shorter-range missiles in Europe and remains open to constructive work, Zakharova said.

"We hope for a constructive reaction. Russia remains open to equal work to minimize the negative consequences of the collapse — I emphasise, through the fault of the United States — of the INF Treaty and to restore confidence", the diplomat emphasised.

On 26 October, Putin announced a new initiative to resolve the situation with growing tensions in Europe after US withdrawal from the INF Treaty. In particular, he said that Moscow was ready, of its own free will, not to deploy 9M729 missiles on the European part of the country, but subject to reciprocal steps from NATO. He also offered the alliance to check Aegis Ashore systems with Mk-41 launchers at bases in Europe and 9M729 missiles at Kaliningrad facilities. Berlin was one of the first to react to the initiative, referring to NATO's previous position that Russian ideas on the INF Treaty were not credible.

© Sputnik

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