The INF treaty was the first arms control agreement to ban an entire class of weapons: ground-launched missiles with a range between 500km (310 miles) and 5,000km.
European Union foreign ministers raised concerns Friday about the spread of nuclear weapons as the United States readied to pull out of a key Cold War-era treaty, blaming Russian Federation for violating it. Reynders said Friday: "I hope that our American colleagues, including outside the treaty framework, are going to keep working on this dialogue with Russian Federation".
USA officials had expressed worry that China was gaining a significant military advantage in Asia by deploying large numbers of missiles with ranges beyond the treaty's limit. Leaving the INF treaty would allow the Trump administration to counter the Chinese, but it's unclear how it would do that.
The U.S. Navy's top officer, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson, said he had not discussed the INF Treaty with his Pacific counterparts during a recent trip to the region that included China and Japan, among other stops.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is scheduled to speak at a news conference in Washington on Friday morning. "I conclude that the United States was not expecting any decision and all this was a game made to cover their domestic decision to withdraw from the INF Treaty".
However, Pranay Vaddi, a former USA diplomat who worked on arms control for the State Department, said the United States would be hard-pressed to find allies in Asia willing to house intermediate-range missiles, nuclear or not. Mike Pompeo warned nearly two months ago that the USA would pull out today if Russian Federation did not "come back into compliance".
"We can not be the only country in the world unilaterally bound by this treaty, or any other", the president said.
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The Russian Foreign Ministry's spokeswoman slammed the United States decision to withdraw from the INF Treaty and noted that Moscow now has the right for reciprocal actions.
Multiple news agencies also reported that the announcement was imminent. At the same time, she added that Moscow is still open for dialogue on the INF Treaty.
The official said if that happens "then the U.S. would unsuspend".
The prospect of US withdrawal from the INF pact has stirred concern globally.
In recent years, the US and Russian Federation have been accusing each other of violating the arms control agreement amid increasing tension between the two countries. "It's wasn't just Des Moines, Iowa".
The briefing also comes one day after an attempt to rescue the treaty failed.
The U.S. first accused Russian Federation of violating the pact in 2014, but Russian Federation first denied it possessed the weapon in violation and then later said that weapon didn't violate the treaty's terms.
The US accused Russian Federation of violating the treaty for the first time in July 2014.