Serhat TUNAR -TDO- NATO General Secretary Jens Stoltenberg stated that the organization and its allies do not want "a new cold war and a new arms race" with Russia. Speaking after the meeting with Russian representatives in Brussels, the official noted that NATO wants to ensure that the dialogue with Moscow on the INF Treaty compliance continues despite any substantial progress made so far.
Stoltenberg stressed that Russia has been violating the terms of the treaty by producing new missiles, adding that "arms control will not work if it is respected only by one side." He urged Moscow to start complying with the agreement in order to avoid further conflict, adding that NATO "wants to find a way forward."
The secretary-general highlighted that it’s too early to discuss the organization's actions should Russia continue to violate the treaty, but that is a very serious issue that will be discussed by NATO and its allies at a later time.
NATO says Russia has deployed a new land-based missile, the Iskander 9M729, in violation of the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, which since 1988 has banned all missiles with a range of 500 to 5,500 kilometers.
The Kremlin insists that it has not breached the INF, and this week a senior Russian defense ministry official showed one of contested missiles to journalists at an event outside of Moscow and said it had a maximum range of 480 kilometers, making it compliant with the treaty.