Russia will be forced to deploy medium-range missiles with nuclear warheads in Europe if the West refuses to enter into an embargo to ban these types of weapons on the continent as part of a package of safeguards over the crisis in Ukraine. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Monday, according to Reuters.
As Ryabkov emphasized, Moscow does not currently trust NATO. Reuters reports that Russia’s relations with the West are currently the worst since the fall of the Iron Curtain.
Nuclear warheads with a range of 500 to 5,500 km were banned in Europe under a 1987 agreement between then-Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and US President Ronald Reagan. Washington withdrew from the agreement, claiming that Moscow had been violating it for years by developing 9M729 (NATO coded screwdriver) missiles with a range of up to 2,500 km.
NATO’s last sign.
Gerhard Mangot, an expert on Russian foreign policy and arms control at the University of Innsbruck, told Reuters that if NATO was right and Russia had already deployed these missiles in its European part, then Ryabkov’s threats were a hollow gesture. However, the expert said, if Russia does not already have these weapons deployed west of the Urals, then Moscow is “the last signal to NATO to start talks.” Screwdriver to its western borders.
According to Ryabkov, Moscow noticed indirect indications that NATO will deploy medium-range missiles in Europe. However, NATO says the US has no plans to deploy more missiles on the continent, and is ready to respond to new Russian missiles only by deploying conventional weapons.
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