Russia violated 1987 missile treaty, US says

By Karen DeYoung

The Washington Post

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration has determined that Russia violated a 1987 treaty on intermediate-range missiles by testing a ground-launched cruise missile, a senior administration official said.

The violation, which began some years ago, is included in a 2014 compliance report on the treaty to be released Tuesday and was the subject of a letter President Barack Obama sent Monday to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“This is a very serious matter which we have attempted to address with Russia for some time now,” the official said. “We encourage Russia to return to compliance with its obligations … and to eliminate any prohibited items in a verifiable manner.”

It was unclear how long the testing lasted, or whether it was ongoing. The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that “we have notified Russia of our determination and are prepared to discuss this in a senior-level bilateral dialogue immediately.”

Obama’s letter to Putin was first reported online Monday by The New York Times, which said that Russia began testing the missiles in 2008 and that the State Department first raised the possibility of a violation with Russian officials in 2013. At the time, the paper said, Russia said it had looked into the matter and considered it closed.

The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, signed by Presidents Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev in 1987, prohibits possession, production or flight testing of a ground-launched cruise missile with a range of 300 to 3,400 miles, or possession or production of launchers of such missiles.

News of the alleged violation comes as relations between the United States and Russia are seriously strained over Russia’s backing of separatist fighters in eastern Ukraine. Obama administration officials have said that, despite their growing differences and the imposition of U.S. economic sanctions over Ukraine, Moscow has continued to cooperate with Washington on a range of nuclear and other foreign policy issues.

More in Local News

Fatal car crash reported on Highway 92 near Lake Stevens

The 3 p.m. accident and investigation stopped traffic in both directions near Machias Road.

Mayor tries new tactic to curb fire department overtime

Stephanson says an engine won’t go into service when the only available staff would be on overtime.

Jamie Copeland is a senior at Cedar Park Christian Schools’ Mountlake Terrace campus. She is a basketball player, ASB president, cheerleader and, of course, a Lion. (Dan Bates / The Herald)
Cedar Park Christian senior stepping up to new challenges

Jamie Copeland’s academics include STEM studies, leadership, ASB activities, honor society.

Cheering families welcome Kidd, Shoup after 6 months at sea

“I get back Daddy back today,” said one homemade sign at Naval Station Everett.

Paine Field fire chief will be allowed to retire

In his letter, the airport director noted Jeff Bohnet was leaving while under investigation.

Stanwood man, 33, killed in crash near Marysville

Speed may have been a factor, the sheriff’s department said.

County plans to sue to recoup costs from ballot drop-box law

A quarter-million dollars could be spent adding 19 ballot boxes in rural areas.

Woman, 47, found dead in Marysville jail cell

She’d been in custody about four days after being arrested on warrants, police said.

Son arrested for hitting father on head at Marysville home

The father grabbed a metal rod and struck his son in the head, too. Both needed medical treatment.

Most Read