Mike PompeoJonathan Ernst
The U.S. and Russia ripped up a Cold War-era missile pact on Friday in a move that raised the spectre of an arms race between the global superpowers.
The 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty limited the use of medium-range missiles, both conventional and nuclear.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Washington’s formal withdrawal in a prepared statement at the ASEAN meet in Bangkok, minutes after Russia pronounced the treaty to be “dead”.
Both sides had signalled their intention to pull out of the treaty for months, trading accusations of breaking the terms of the deal.
“Russia is solely responsible for the treaty’s demise,” Mr. Pompeo said.
Shortly before Pompeo's announcement, Russia’s Foreign Ministry in Moscow said the deal had been terminated at the “at the initiative of the U.S.”.
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