Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has expressed regret over the decision of the US to withdraw its obligations under the INF or Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty in response to Russia’s material breach and Moscow’s decision to respond in kind. He expressed the hope that the two countries would use the six-month period that the formal withdrawal period lasts to go back to the negotiating table and reach agreement. Babiš said the world today faces too many global problems to return to the era of the Cold War and a new arms race.
Czech Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček said he hoped there was still time to reverse the decision, but stressed that the ball was now in Russia’s court. Along with its NATO allies the Czech Republic has repeatedly called on Russia to adhere to its obligations under the INF treaty.
The INF, or The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, Treaty was signed between the former Soviet Union and the United States on December 8, 1987 and entered into force on June 1, 1988. The treaty covered deployed and non-deployed ground-based short-range missiles (from 500 to 1,000 kilometres) and intermediate-range missiles (from 1,000 to 5,500 kilometres).
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