Saturday, February 02, 2019

China and the US Exit from INF Treaty

US secretary of state Pompeo says the U.S. will suspend its obligations to the INF treaty today, Saturday Feb. 2nd 2019. The day before he stated that if Russia doesn’t come into compliance, the treaty “will terminate.”

The INF treaty (Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces treaty), signed in 1987, was the first arms control measure to ban an entire class of weapons: Ground-launched cruise missiles with a range between 500 kilometers (310 miles) and 5,000 kilometers (3,100 miles). Russia denies that it has been in violation.

U.S. officials have expressed concern that China, which isn’t part of the treaty, is deploying large numbers of missiles in Asia that the U.S. can’t counter because it’s bound by the treaty [Boston Herald]. There remains an amassing of US missiles on more or less small islands like Okinawa and which could be easily handled by Chinese rocket forces in case of conflict between China and the US according to Chinese opinion comments on one website which is dealing with military items [SINA Military 新浪军事]. This seems to be the reason why Washington specially declared that China had nothing to do with the INF treaty.

Chinese comments to the subject as found on a related
SINA Military 新浪军事 website published on Feb. 1st.

Russia's answer to the US decision followed within hours:


Top-tweets on Twitter for @blueprint_news in January 2019.