Putin orders reciprocal Russian response to US missile test

The US tests a ground-launched Tomahawk cruise missile that was banned under the INF treaty

The US tests a ground-launched Tomahawk cruise missile that was banned under the INF treaty

The missile hit its target after more than 500 kilometers (310 miles) of flight, the Pentagon said.

Moscow and Washington ripped up the pact early this month after several months of accusing one another of breaching its conditions.

Deployments in Europe and Asia, he said, threatened Moscow's "basic interests" since they would be "close to Russian borders".

" Our people will never be pulled into an expensive arms race that might be devastating for our economic situation", Putin explained, including that Russian Federation lists 7th in weapons investing following the UNITED STATE, China, Saudi Arabia, Britain, France and even Japan.

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He ordered the Defense Ministry and other agencies: "To take comprehensive measures to prepare a symmetric response". He said the missile test on August 18, so soon after the treaty's expiration, proved it.

He said Moscow was against placement of the launchers in Poland in Romania as part of a missile defence system, but the U.S. denied they could be used offensively to launch Tomahawks.

While Putin hasn't spelled out possible retaliatory measures, some Moscow-based military experts theorized that Russian Federation could adapt the sea-launched Kalibr cruise missiles for use from ground launchers. Missile defense facilities or longer-range rocket strike systems?

In the filmed address which was posted on the Kremlin website, Putin also boasted about Russia's "unparalleled" development of "the latest weapons".

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Putin said that the test confirmed prior suspicions that the U.S. had planned to place banned weapons in Europe.

Russian President Vladimir Putin speeches during his meeting with governors of Russian regions at the Kremlin on August 22, 2019 in Moscow, Russia. Officials stressed that the missile is created to carry a conventional payload, not a nuclear one.

The treaty was signed in 1987 by then-Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and U.S. President Ronald Reagan, reducing the chances of a nuclear war in Europe. Scientists there are believed to have been testing what North Atlantic Treaty Organisation has code named "Skyfall", a 9M730 Burevestnik cruise missile propelled by a small nuclear reactor that would give it a almost limitless flying range.

Looking ahead, Polyansky said the demise of the INF treaty put "at risk" the START treaty on long-range nuclear weapons that is scheduled to expire in 2021.

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Putin also called a meeting of the United Nations Security Council to discuss the matter.

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