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'We Must Prepare for a World Without the INF Treaty'

Pompeo announces the US is withdrawing
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 1, 2019 7:30 AM CST
Updated Feb 1, 2019 8:11 AM CST
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks to the press after attending the UN Security Council on Jan. 26, 2019.   (AP Photo/Kevin Hagen)
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(Newser) – Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Friday that the US is pulling out of a treaty with Russia that's been a centerpiece of arms control since the Cold War. The American withdrawal, expected for months, follows years of unresolved dispute over Russian compliance with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, treaty, per the AP. The 1987 pact was the first arms control measure to ban an entire class of weapons: ground-launched cruise missiles with a range between 310 miles and 3,400 miles. Russia denies that it has been in violation. What you need to know:

  • Pompeo said in December that Washington would give Moscow 60 days to return to compliance—a deadline that expires on Saturday—before it gave formal notice of withdrawal, with actual withdrawal taking place six months later. That technically leaves a small window for saving the treaty. However, in talks this week in Beijing, the US and Russia reported no breakthrough in their dispute.

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