News / USA

US: Russia Violated Nuclear Treaty

President Barack Obama meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, June 17, 2013.
President Barack Obama meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, June 17, 2013.
VOA News

The United States accused Russia of violating a historic nuclear test ban treaty by testing a ground-launched cruise missile.

U.S officials said President Barack Obama informed Russian President Vladimir Putin in a letter Monday of the United States' determination that Russia broke the 1987 treaty. 

The move was first reported Monday evening by The New York Times.

The U.S. said Russia tested a new ground-launched cruise missile, breaking the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty that President Ronald Reagan signed with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev.

The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty was designed to eliminate ground-launched cruise missiles with ranges of 500-5,500 kilometers.

The U.S. is calling the matter "very serious" and White House spokesman Josh Earnest on Tuesday said Russia's response to its complaint was not satisfactory.

"We have raised concerns with the Russians about the importance of complying with this aspect of the treaty and, I guess suffice it to say, the response we received from them was unsatisfactory," he said.

Earnest said the U.S. intends to pressure Russia on the issue because it believes compliance with the treaty is in the "clear national security interests" of the United States.

"We're going to hold them to living up to the commitments that they made," he said.

The accusation comes during a time of heightened tension between Washington and Moscow over Russia's support of separatists fighting in eastern Ukraine and its decision to grant asylum to National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden.

The top diplomats for the two countries, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, discussed the issue in a phone conversation. But the Russian Foreign Ministry did not comment on the U.S. complaint.

U.S. officials said the Obama administration is willing to hold high-level discussions on the issue and wants assurances that Russia will comply with the treaty requirements going forward.

Russia hinted at quiting a year ago

Russia and the United States destroyed nearly 2,700 nuclear-armed missiles as part of a Cold War-era nuclear test ban treaty.

The treaty has no expiration date, but a year ago, Sergei Ivanov, a former Russian defense minister and now Putin's chief of staff, raised the possibility of quitting the treaty. He told a Russian television interviewer that "on the one hand, we've signed the agreement, we will obey it. But that could not last forever."

He said the United States does not need the mid-range missiles because they could only be used to target two of it closest allies, Mexico and Canada.

At the time, Putin said that the land-based cruise missiles were not crucial for the United States, but that "practically all our neighbors develop these systems."

The Russian leader said that for "modern Russia," the decision 27 years ago to end use of the land-based cruise missiles was "disputable."

The  Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty was signed by U.S. President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. At the time, it was viewed as a cornerstone for ending the Cold War.

You May Like

African States Push to Keep Boko Haram Offline

Central African telecoms ministers working with Nigeria to block all videos posted by Boko Haram in effort to blunt Nigerian militant group's propaganda More

Falling Oil Prices, Internet-Savvy Youth Pose Challenge for Gulf Monarchies

Across the Gulf, younger generations are putting a strain on traditional politics More

Philippines Call Center Workers Face Challenges

Country has world’s largest business process outsourcing, or BPO, industry, employing some one-million workers More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
    Next 
by: Igor from: Russia
July 30, 2014 4:03 AM
That kind of bilateral treaty betwwen 2 countries is outdated. Many other nuclear players who have not signed that treaty such as the UK, France, Pakistan, China, India, Istrael...And they have ground-launched cruise missiles with ranges of 500-5,500 kilometers ready to strike Russia at any time. So Russia has every right to leave the Treaty as soon as possible for security reasons. Only a fool cannot understand that simple logic.

by: anonymous from: canada
July 29, 2014 1:40 PM
US doesn't have the moral right to talk about Russia' s violation nuke treaty while it has thousands of nuke heads itself.
In Response

by: Not Again from: Canada
July 29, 2014 4:16 PM
WAYTA! Russia and the US signed a comprehensive nuclear arms treaty which equalizes their warheads, and was supposed to stop/eliminate any ground launched nuclear cruise missiles.
If it is true that Russia is now into the ground launched nuclear missile development/fielding it is a major treaty violation, because such missiles are very hard to detect, while in storage on the ground.
A country could easily double or triple its warheads/lanch capabilities, without detection. This, if true, will cause serious instability, especially in Europe, because of the range, mediun at best, of the criuise missile launcher.

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
July 29, 2014 1:12 PM
I think Russia has been pushed for too long with its back to the wall. Obama in his childish diplomacy refuses to see when he trips over a red line of superpower diplomacy and continues to ignore Russia's warning signals, including those insinuated by the watching world and the responses to VOA's contributory articles. Now Russia, seemingly not the garrulous type, is responding in its own way. What does Mr. Obama understand and how does he want Putin to speak to him so that he will know that Moscow is most uncomfortable with the politics of humiliation at Washington, London, Paris, Cologne and the NATO alliance arguably formed to counter Russia, at the instance of USA?

In so many ways, including the wars in Syria, Ukraine and Libya, Obama has shown Putin that the cold war is not over, and the only way Putin understands is not to juggle words in English language with him but to take action that will spell out, in no uncertain terms, what Moscow's response is to the many diplomatic posers from Washington. One hopes that Obama will take enough consultation with those in the know and proceed with the right attitude in dealing with Russia by giving it its well deserved respect. Mishandled, the result will be an escalation/proliferation of the nuclear arms race. Maybe the next question will be who will win if there breaks out a nuclear war, or, who will it hurt most if the strategic arms limitations treaties break down and the world witnesses another free-for-all arms race?

by: Not Again from: Canada
July 29, 2014 12:12 PM
And so it goes, the downward spiral towards greater instability in Europe; thanks to Germany et al, for not taking the Ukrainian situation seriously. The cost of the rising intability, will by far exceed the money/investment to which they were holding on so dearly; and yes MONEY SHOULD NOT TRUMP MORALITY!

by: Anonymous
July 29, 2014 11:22 AM
I do not know what's going on in the world lately. It seems that countries are up in war with each other. We need to overcome our differences and make clear that the war does not interest anyone.

by: Hun from: Netherlands
July 29, 2014 9:03 AM
Today,when USA and EU plan to impose sanctions on Russia, Russia's stock market has risen up to 1%. It's another proof that sanctions are ridiculous!!!

by: Sunny Enwerem from: Lagos Nigeria
July 29, 2014 8:28 AM
Sooner or Later Karma will play out on Russia's action in Ukraine ,Polices always out live People or Putin .

by: Gennady from: Russia, Volga Region
July 29, 2014 6:47 AM
It is a great news that Russia got free of some outdated agreements with the country whose President for months on end in his every speech had repeatedly humiliated Russia, had tirelessly reiterated of Russia’s imperfections, of its international insignificance and of being just a regional power. So, what is this Obama’s fuss about Russia’s violation of a historic nuclear test ban treaty with testing a ground-launched cruise missile? Russian President Putin enjoys such high approval rating in public polls that Mr Obama+Mr Cameron should envy. All Obama’s exertions have destroyed enormous efforts of previous American presidents on building and strengthening bilateral USA-Russia relations and mutual trust.

Even more laughable to hear of Russia’s incompliance with the obsolete international treaties at the height of the sanctions frenzy. President Putin is absolutely right that the USA’s and its associates’ sanctions against Russia are blackmail in its most evident form. The same as with Jen Psaki from Obama's Administration not knowing European geography, Mr Obama does not know the fact from the world history that in the last 96 years of Russian history, starting from 1917, all sanctions from the West had never ever yielded expected results. Mr Obama does not know that Russia is a self-sufficient country, it proved to be able to exist without the West for decades and flourish to the resentment of the decadent West.
In Response

by: meanbill from: USA
July 29, 2014 11:42 AM
COMPETITION makes people and countries great, and forcing Russia to make their own products, will either make Russia great, or bring it to it's knees..... what do you believe these sanctions will do to Russia?

by: Igor from: Russia
July 29, 2014 4:19 AM
it is too stupid for Mr. Obama to raise that issue when he is seeking more sactions against Russia. He must bear in mind that if he continues his hostile actions against Russia he should not mention any nuclear or missile treaty because Russia will withdraw from any out-dated treaty to protect itself from Western threats.
No sensible leader acts like that. Russia is as a spring. If you try to press it hard, it will bounce at your face.
In Response

by: meanbill from: USA
July 29, 2014 9:19 AM
Hey Igor... Russia is the only country in the whole world, that challenges the US, EU, and NATO powers in reshaping the world order, (and their ousting of rulers, and installing new rulers), who should rule countries, in their vision of the new world order..... WHY?

by: Jimmy McKee from: The Americas
July 29, 2014 4:19 AM
There have been no comments on this for over two hours. Mhm. Yep. Sounds legit.
Comments page of 2
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More