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Nothing About Trashing the INF Treaty Makes the US Safer - Defense One Defense One

Trump abandons INF treaty

Originally published: Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (February 1, 2019)   | 

Watch our video to find out about the latest decision.

Trump has announced that he will withdraw the U.S. from the INF treaty. This treaty has been a bedrock of nuclear arms control, having eliminated thousands of deadly nuclear missiles in Europe.

This is a very dangerous moment for the whole world. A new nuclear arms race is emerging and the threat of nuclear war grows by the day.

The movement must be ready to rise up to oppose the return of U.S. nuclear missiles on British soil if the treaty is scrapped at the end of the 6-month withdrawal period.

Campaign updates

1 February 2019 – Trump announces INF withdrawal

23rd January 2019 – 10 days to save the INF treaty

7th January 2019 – our submission to the Defence Committee on the Consequences for UK Defence of INF withdrawal

2nd January 2019 – launched updated lobby letter to the Foreign Secretary

21st December 2018 – letter from the Foreign Office

Thousands of you wrote to the Foreign Office to find out what the government is doing to save the INF. Here is their response. This is clearly inadequate, so we are preparing a follow-up letter. More details soon.

5th December 2018 – visit to the Foreign Office 

Background

President Trump has announced that he will withdraw the U.S. from the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Force (INF) Treaty with Russia on February 2nd, unless Russia displays full compliance. While CND calls on both Russia and the U.S. to fully comply with the terms of the INF, threatening to withdraw from the treaty in 60 days rather than proposing negotiations to resolve the outstanding issues is a risky decision.

The INF is a vital nuclear treaty which has ensured the destruction of nearly 2,700 short-and medium-range missiles and has played a crucial role in ensuring that U.S. missiles are not situated in Europe.

This withdrawal from the INF treaty is part of a wider pattern of the U.S. disengaging from essential international nuclear treaties. Earlier this year, the U.S. withdrew from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, removing its support for a treaty which sought to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons.

Furthermore, the U.S. withdrawal from the INF treaty also calls into question whether Washington will work with Moscow to renew the New START treaty in 2021, when it is due to expire. The New START treaty, signed in 2010, limits the number of nuclear warheads of both Russia and the U.S. to no more than 700.

This treaty is therefore crucial for preventing a global arms race and ensuring nuclear de-escalation. However, given the US’ current attitude towards global agreements it is now uncertain whether Washington will continue to limit its nuclear weapons through engagement in the process of renewing New START.

Read more about why Trump is making the world a more dangerous place

Britain has an important role to play in this crisis. It should be encouraging a diplomatic solution to the crisis, rather than fanning the flames that can lead to nuclear war. Standing by and allowing crucial nuclear arms control agreements to be torn up places the whole world in great danger.

It’s important to act now. Together we can make sure that our calls for a safer world are heard.

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