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Pompeo said Russia's violations of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty undermine American national security and as such, the USA should not be "constrained" by a treaty that hampers its ability to respond.

The bilateral treaty between Washington and Moscow banned all land-based cruise and ballistic missiles with a range between 310 and 3,410 miles.

He warned the world to take heed of Russia's hypersonic missile capabilities as USA president Donald Trump threatens to pull out of the Soviet-era Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty.

One-third to one-half of China's ballistic missile arsenal would violate the INF if Beijing was bound by the treaty, according to a US assessment. Otherwise, he said, the U.S. would quit the 1987 accord, considered a milestone in reducing the threat of a nuclear war in Europe.

But Moscow said that the U.S. was falsely accusing it of violating the treaty in order to create a pretext for Washington to abandon it.

Russian Federation flatly denies undertaking any new development of land-based, intermediate-range Cruise missile capable of carrying nuclear warheads and hitting European cities at short notice.

Meanwhile, NATO foreign ministers in a statement on 4 December collectively declared for the first time that Russia's 9M729 missile violates the INF Treaty and that it was now up to Moscow to preserve the accord.

"Russia has a last chance to show in a verifiable way that they comply with the treaty ... but we also have to start to prepare for the fact that this treaty may break down", Stoltenberg said.

US Cruise and Pershing missiles deployed in Britain and West Germany were removed as a result of the treaty, while the Soviet Union pulled back its SS-20s out of European range.

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They are suspected of interfering in regulatory decisions that favoured Bezeq and its majority shareholder Shaul Elovitch. Other opposition figures, including opposition leader Tzipi Livni, quickly joined in the call for Netanyahu to resign.

His warning may give Trump pause for thought as he edges closer to unilaterally withdrawing from the INF Treaty, which prohibits the deployment of intermediate range ground-based missiles.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday that it "strictly complies with the provisions of the treaty, and the American side is aware of that".

Some US lawmakers raised the alarm that the Trump administration's move threatens to trigger an arms race between the United States and Russian Federation.

The NATO ministers called on Russian Federation to "return urgently to full and verifiable compliance", saying it is now "up to Russian Federation to preserve the INF treaty".

"Instead of complaining all the time about the United States walking away from the treaty, the Europeans should spend a bit of time looking at why the United States is withdrawing from the treaty", he said.

"It is illogical. It is unsafe as instead of discussing development goals we will find ourselves back in a situation of armed confrontation".

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin appealed for North Atlantic Treaty Organisation support in the confrontation with Russian Federation over the Black Sea and the adjacent Sea of Azov, a key commercial waterway for the country.

"If we do not, we will get cheated by other nations, expose Americans to greater risk, and squander our credibility", Pompeo said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday warned the United States that if it walks out of a key arms treaty and starts developing the type of missiles banned by it, Russia will do the same.


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