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US pulls out of Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces treaty with Russia

US President Donald Trump announced on 01 February 2019 that the United States will pull out of the three-decade-old Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty, which it had signed with Russia during the Cold War.

Trump announced that the US will suspend its obligations under the pact and begin the process of withdrawing from it on February 2, 2019. He stated that the US will exit the treaty in six months unless Russia comes back into compliance by destroying all of its violating missiles, launchers, and associated equipment.

In response to US suspension of the treaty, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on 02 February 2019 that Russia would also abandon its obligations under the cold-war era nuclear arms control treaty. Putin stated that Russia would build weapons previously banned under the treaty and would no longer initiate talks with the United States on any matters related to nuclear arms control.

The decision comes as the United States has begun building its first long-range nuclear weapons since 1991, a move that other nations are citing to justify their own nuclear modernization efforts. The move signals an end to the more than a half-century of traditional nuclear arms control, in which the key agreements were negotiated in the US and Russia.

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