President Trump’s announcement that the United States would withdraw from a nuclear disarmament treaty with Russia drew sharp criticism Sunday from one of the men who signed it, Mikhail S. Gorbachev, who called the decision reckless and not the work of “a great mind.”
In making his announcement Saturday, Mr. Trump cited Russian violations of the pact, the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, which was signed in Washington in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan and Mr. Gorbachev.
Mr. Gorbachev, who is now 87 years old, cast Mr. Trump’s decision as a threat to peace.
In an interview with the Interfax news agency, Mr. Gorbachev called Mr. Trump’s rollback of the disarmament agreement “very strange.” He added: “Do they really not understand in Washington what this can lead to?”
The last Soviet leader, who is perceived more warmly in the West than inside Russia, has already watched his domestic reform agendas supporting democracy and greater freedom of the press unravel in recent years. Nuclear disarmament also defined his legacy.
Read full interview here
Meanwhile Russia has warned US president Donald Trump that his plans to ditch a key nuclear arms-control agreement risk a military escalation and will strike a major blow against global security. T
he proposed withdrawal from the 1987 Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty, which helped end the cold war, was “a very dangerous step”, Russian officials said, as Nato allies in Europe warned against dismantling one of the continent’s major safeguards against conflict. FT