Russia’s Foreign Ministry has sent notices of suspension to other parties to the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a briefing on Thursday, TASS reported.
"On March 5, the Russian Foreign Ministry sent notices of suspension to all other parties to the INF Treaty: the United States, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine," she said.
INF: from inception to suspension
The INF Treaty, signed by the Soviet Union and the United States on December 8, 1987, took effect on June 1, 1988. It applies to deployed and non-deployed ground-based missiles of intermediate range (1,000-5,000 kilometers) and shorter range (500-1,000 kilometers). Washington on many occasions had accused Russia of violating the accord, but Moscow vehemently dismissed all accusations and, in its turn, expressed grievances over Washington’s non-compliance.
On February 1, US President Donald Trump and US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo announced the suspension of Washington’s obligations under the INF starting February 2. Washington is determined to withdraw from the treaty in six months unless Russia returns to "real and verifiable" compliance.
On February 2, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Moscow was also suspending the agreement. He handed down instructions to refrain from initiating talks with Washington on the issue and stressed that the US needed to show willingness for an equal and substantive dialogue.
Putin signed a decree suspending Moscow’s compliance with the Treaty on March 4.