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Russia nuclear treaty: Gorbachev warns Trump plan will undermine disarmament

October 21, 2018 4:07 pm

Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev says US President Trump’s plan to withdraw from a key Cold War nuclear weapons treaty is a reversal of efforts to achieve nuclear disarmament.

Mr Gorbachev – who signed the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty with President Reagan in 1987 – questioned the plan’s intelligence.

Mr Trump said Russia had been “violating [the INF] for many years”.

Russia has condemned the plans and threatened to retaliate.

The Kremlin said President Vladimir Putin would be seeking an explanation from visiting US National Security Adviser John Bolton.

Germany was the first US ally to criticise the move, with Foreign Minister Heiko Maas urging Washington to consider the consequences both for Europe and for future disarmament efforts.

The INF banned ground-launched medium-range missiles, with a range of between 500 and 5,500km (310-3,400 miles).