OREANDA-NEWSThe main topics of the Friday meeting of the Russia-NATO Council (RNC) at the ambassadorial level were Ukraine, the Treaty on the Elimination of Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles (INF) and the reduction of military risks in Europe, Alliance Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said after the meeting. "We discussed three key topics: the situation in Ukraine, including tensions around the Sea of Azov, the INF and the reduction of military risks in Europe", said Stoltenberg. According to him, the participants of the NRC do not see any signs of progress on the INF. 

“All the present countries reaffirmed the importance of this treaty, noted the need for its observance as a necessary step to ensure security on the continent. But now he is under threat. Unfortunately, we did not see any signs of a breakthrough in this direction, although all participants expressed their full commitment to the principles of arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation. However, we must prepare for a world without the INF Treaty, which will be less stable for all of us", said Stoltenberg.

The head of the international committee once again reminded the Russian side of the danger of this problem and the resumption of the dispute. “NATO sees only one way to save the INF Treaty - if Russia removes its new weapons, but there is no indication that Russia intends to do this”, he said. He stressed that the NATO countries "today once again called on Russia to return to the full and verifiable implementation of INF." Stoltenberg also expressed the opinion that "if Russia wants, it can destroy its cruise missiles in a few weeks". 

The United States for the first time accused Russia of violating the INF Treaty in July 2014. Moscow categorically rejects Washington’s conclusions about non-compliance with the INF. And makes counterclaims regarding the fulfillment of the treaty by the United States.