Pompeo to announce suspension of INF treaty

/ CBS News

Reporting by Fin Gomez and Christina Ruffini

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will announce on Friday that the United States is suspending compliance with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty after discussions to save the pact this week failed.

The INF was negotiated by former President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev in 1987, and bans both the U.S. and Russia from stationing short- and intermediate-range, land-based nuclear missiles in Europe. President Trump announced in October that the U.S. would withdraw from the treaty due to violations by Russia.

"Russia has violated the agreement. They have been violating it for many years," Mr. Trump said after a rally in Elko, Nevada. "And we're not going to let them violate a nuclear agreement and go out and do weapons and we're not allowed to." Mr. Trump said that the U.S. would resume building new missiles if Russia did not comply.

Pompeo announced that the U.S. would suspend the treaty in 60 days on Dec. 5 at a NATO meeting. The Russian government warned retaliation if the treaty were broken. Talks between the two countries disintegrated this week.

Pompeo's announcement of suspension kicks off a six-month countdown, after which the U.S. must choose whether to permanently withdraw from the arms control treaty. If Russia comes into compliance with the treaty within that time frame, the U.S. could decide not to pull out of the deal.

First published on January 31, 2019

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