Russia Says It May Be Forced To Deploy Nuclear Missiles In Europe
MOSCOW - Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Monday that Russia may be forced to deploy intermediate-range nuclear missiles in Europe if NATO does not engage with it on preventing escalation
Russia said that they believe that NATO also plans to deploy nuclear weapons in Europe, and Ryabkov told Russian state run news agency RIA in an interview that Moscow would have to take the first step if NATO refuses to engage with it on preventing this kind of escalation.
Intermediate range nuclear forces (INF) in Europe was banned in 1987 under a treaty agreement between then Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and U.S. President Ronald Reagan which began to ease cold war tensions.
Ryabkov stated that there are 'indirect indications' that NATO is moving toward re-deploying intermediate range missiles. One such indication was the restoration of the 56th Artillery Command in Europe last month. The 56th Artillery Command operated nuclear-capable Pershing missiles during the cold war so it is assumed Russia believes they will again.
"That is, it will be a confrontation, this will the next round, the appearance of such resources on our side. Right now there aren't any, we have a unilateral moratorium. We call for NATO and the U.S. to join this moratorium" Ryabkov stated.
NATO on the other hand has denied that there will be any new missiles deployed in Europe, but Ryabkov stated that Russia has a 'complete lack of trust' in NATO.
"They don't permit themselves to do anything that could somehow increase our security - they believe they can act as they need, to their advantage, and we simply have to swallow all this and deal with it. This is not going to continue".