US National Security Adviser John Bolton has explained the US decision to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview with the “Moscow. Kremlin. Putin” TV show aired by the Rossiya 1 TV channel on Ooctober 28.
In the interview, Lavrov stated that Bolton informed the Russian side that the US is now mostly focused on the Asian direction where Washington seeks to compensate the “unfair” INF limits imposed on the US in the field of the intermediate-range nuclear forces. According to Lavrov, Washington requested Russia over the involvement of China, Iran, India and Pakistan in the INF-style agreement. However, Moscow responded that the US has to contact these states by itself.
Lavrov recalled that ten years ago the US and Russia suggested other states to joint the INF Treaty, but the answer was negative.
The Lavrov remarks in the interview with Rossiya 1 is a notable drop down in the Russian diplomatic rhetorics on the US withdrawal from the INF Treaty. Earlier, Russian top diplomats stated that the US decision is a significant step undermining the regional security and Moscow will have to undertake practical steps, including developing technical measures, in response to it.