Russia suspends INF Treaty, no plan for new talks: Putin
Updated 18:41, 02-Feb-2019

Russia has suspended the Cold War-era Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty and has no plans to initiate new disarmament talks with Washington, President Vladimir Putin said Saturday.

"The American partners have declared that they suspend their participation in the deal; we suspend it as well," Putin said during a televised meeting with foreign and defense ministers.

"We have repeatedly, during a number of years, and constantly raised a question about substantiate talks on the disarmament issue, notably, on all the aspects," Putin said, "We see that in the past few years the partners have not supported our initiatives."

In the meeting, he claimed the U.S. has breached the nuclear arms pact, and suggested that "an inspection of U.S. arms is needed."

He also stressed that Russia will start work on creating new missiles, including hypersonic ones, but will not increase its military budget and won't deploy medium-and-shorter-range missiles in any region as long as the U.S. avoids deploying them, according to Russian media RT.

During the meeting, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also accused the U.S. of violating the INF and other arms deals, such as the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Putin's move was a "mirror response" to the U.S., said RT. 

The U.S. announced Friday it will withdraw from the INF Treaty in six months unless Moscow ends what it says are violations of the landmark 1987 arms control pact.

Read more: Moscow says still ready for dialogue over the INF treaty

(With input from Reuters)