Putin condemns US withdrawal from key military agreements

Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the US withdrew from key military agreements and failed to uphold its promises, while responding to a question on Russia’s role in the deteriorating relationship between Russia and the United States.

“Did we leave the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty? We didn’t do that. And we have to respond by creating new weapons systems that can confront threats … then our colleagues (the United States) withdrew from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty … and the Open Skies Treaty,” Putin said on Thursday during his annual press conference, Xinhua reported.

He further noted that the US accumulated a global network of military bases, and the country’s military budget amounts to $770 billion, contrasting the Russian budget that is way lesser, stressing that Russia displays a less aggressive policy than the US.

The president said that due to a reluctance from the US side to continue dialogue and negotiations in relation to the INF Treaty, the United States cannot expect Russia to leave things the way they are.

The president added that the termination of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, which will expire in February, poses a threat and leaves the world with nothing associated with the control of the arms race.