US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Friday that the US is suspending its com

pliance of the Intermediate-Range Forces (INF) Treaty with Russia on Saturday and will start a 180-day pr

ocedure to completely withdraw from the arms control accord. In response, Russian President Vladimir Putin said

Russia will also suspend participation in the INF treaty. “They say that they are doing research and testing [new w

eapons] and we will do the same thing,” Putin said during a meeting with Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu.

  Although Washington claimed it would return to compliance of the treaty if Russia verifiab

ly destroys a cruise missile system which the US said was a violation of the treaty, analysts believe such a

turnaround would not happen. Two months ago when the US threatened to pull out of the treaty, it began to bury the accord.

  Scrapping the treaty would be the beginning of the collapse of the global arms control system. It’s highly likely a new arms race will start.

  The arms control agreements reached between the US and the Soviet Union during th

e latter period of the Cold War not only curbed the arms race to a certain extent, but also produced a politi

cal effect that appeased the people. The US withdrawal from the treaty will lead to a grim outlook for the 21st century.

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