Russia says it would be open to new nuclear pact with US

Russia says it would be open to new nuclear pact with US
© Getty Images

A Russian official said Thursday that Moscow would consider a proposal from the United States for a new nuclear pact after each side said it was withdrawing from a decades-old treaty.

Reuters reported that Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov suggested Russia would weigh a new proposal that includes other countries after President TrumpDonald John TrumpJustice Department preparing for Mueller report as soon as next week: reports Smollett lawyers declare 'Empire' star innocent Pelosi asks members to support resolution against emergency declaration MORE announced last week the U.S. plans to stop complying with the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

“We of course saw the reference in President Trump’s statement to the possibility of a new treaty that could be signed in a beautiful room and that this treaty should also include other countries as its participants,” Ryabkov said, according to the news service.

ADVERTISEMENT

He noted that the U.S. had not sent any concrete proposal for a new agreement, Reuters reported.

The U.S. withdrawal from the INF Treaty was anticipated for some time, as Trump had previously suggested the move and administration officials have argued that Russia has failed to comply with the deal for years. 

The agreement, signed by then-President Reagan and Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev in 1987, bans nuclear and conventional ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles with ranges between 500 and 5,500 kilometers.

The U.S. announcement kick-started a six-month withdrawal period. Trump administration officials plan to continue diplomatic talks with Moscow about the treaty, though there is skepticism those will result in an agreement.