Washington explores steps in its military policy in case Russia breaches the Immediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty. Thomas Shannon, the U.S. Deputy Secretary of the State said that talking to a reporter from Kommersant outlet.
‘Although we remain committed to a diplomatic resolution of the question of violations by Russia of the provisions of the Treaty, the US is also beginning to explore possible military solutions to create a system of medium-range missiles, land-based, which, if Russia starts to comply with the provisions of the INF Treaty and it will cease to act as the result of admitted violations by Russia, would be protecting the US and our allies and offset the military superiority of Russia, which it seeks through the establishment of prohibited missiles. The Treaty does not prohibit research that does not lead to possession, manufacture and flight tests of proscribed systems,’ Shannon said as quoted. 'The United States will not take any action in violation of our obligations under the INF Treaty. We are ready to stop this kind of systems development, which is prohibited by the INF Treaty if Russia will return to full and verifiable compliance with its obligations under the INF Treaty', he added.
The Immediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF Treaty) is the 1987 agreement between the U.S. and the USSR. The document was ratified by the U.S. Senate on 27 May 1988 and came into force on 1 June 1988.
The INF Treaty eliminated all nuclear and conventional missiles, as well as their launchers, with ranges of 500–1,000 kilometers (310–620 mi) (short-range) and 1,000–5,500 km (620–3,420 mi) (intermediate-range). The treaty did not cover sea-launched missiles.