US deployment of nukes in Europe violates NPT: Russia
Iran Press TV
Tue Mar 24, 2015 1:21PM
Russia has called on the United States, as a NATO member, to withdraw its nuclear weapons from Europe, saying their deployment in the continent violates the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
"We have repeatedly drawn NATO's attention to the fact that such practices directly run counter to the spirit and the letter of NPT," said Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman, Alexander Lukashevich, on Tuesday.
However, the Western military alliance turns a blind eye to Moscow's calls and keeps pursuing the same policy, said Lukashevich, stressing, "This abnormal situation has been observed for more than 40 years [since the NPT went into effect]. And it is not becoming any more acceptable for us."
The remarks came days after US State Department spokeswoman, Jen Psaki, claimed that "the deployment of US nuclear weapons on the territories of our NATO allies is consistent with the NPT."
"These weapons remain under US control at all times and are never transferred," Psaki said on March 19, adding, "NPT Articles I and II do not prohibit these types of nuclear basing or planning arrangements."
Lukashevich further denounced Psaki's statement, saying Washington is "blatantly misrepresenting facts."
Article 1 of NPT stipulates that no country is allowed to transfer its nuclear weapons to other parties while article 2 of the treaty prohibits those countries lacking nuclear know-how from having access to nuclear weapons, Lukashevich stated, adding that the US deployment of nuclear arms in Europe infringes upon the terms of the agreement.
Frayed NATO-Moscow ties
US-Moscow relations have been extremely tense in recent months. The US and NATO accuse the Kremlin of supporting pro-Russia forces in east Ukraine. Russia categorically denies the allegations, saying NATO's presence near the Russian borders is responsible for the flare-up in the restive region.
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