Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the test of a new U.S. missile banned under a now-defunct arms treaty has raised new threats to Russia and will warrant a response.
Speaking after talks with Finnish President Sauli Niinisto, Putin argued that the quick test indicated the U.S. had begun work on the missile long before declaring its intention to withdraw from the from the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty that banned such weapons.
"The Americans have tested this missile too quickly after having withdrawn from the treaty," Putin said. "That gives us strong reason to believe that they had started work to adapt the sea-launched missile long before they began looking for excuses to opt out of the treaty."
The Russian leader said that Russia would also work to design such weapons, but reaffirmed that it wouldn't deploy the missiles previously banned by the INF treaty to any area before the U.S. does that first.
"Such missiles could be launched from facilities in Romania, as well as those to be deployed in Poland," he said. "It only requires software tweaks. I'm not sure that our American friends will share the information about which software they use even with their European partners."
He said that for Russia that means "the emergence of new threats, to which we will react accordingly."
Source: Jordan News Agency