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The United States had accused Russian Federation in October of owning a Novator 9M729 missile, which would be in direct violation of the treaty.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday warned Russian Federation that if it did not dismantle its 9M279 mobile ground-launched missile system, Washington would no longer be bound by the treaty.

In Moscow on Wednesday, Putin told journalists the USA had provided "no evidence" of Russian violations, and threatened an arms race if the United States sought to develop new medium-range missiles after exiting the treaty.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that although Moscow has a last chance to comply with the INF, "we must also start to prepare for a world without the treaty".

In Moscow, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that "Russia strictly complies with the provisions of the treaty, and the American side is aware of that".

The prospect of USA missiles on European soil is a concern for states including Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, whose representatives have urged Mr Pompeo to continue with diplomacy in fear of a European arms race.

Putin's remarks to Russian news agencies on Wednesday came a day after U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced at a NATO meeting that Washington will suspend its obligations under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) in 60 days, citing Russian "cheating".

It is alleged that Moscow has violated the terms of the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty - a historic pact that kept such deadly missiles out of Europe.

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However, Nato allies would have to agree unanimously to have any new missile deployed in Europe.

President Donald Trump earlier this year announced his decision to withdraw from the INF, accusing Russian Federation and China - which is not a signatory to the treaty - of violating it. "At the end of the 60 days, it's going to be a free-for-all".

"They are not going to change course on the basis of a US threat to withdraw", Kimball said.

Stoltenberg said that he regretted seeing the INF come to a close.

Klimkin welcomed the political support he received in Brussels, but said: "We shouldn't just stay on the level of declarations, however strong declarations are".

Ukrainian authorities said Tuesday that shipping traffic has resumed on the Sea, but a senior U.S. State Department official said that at North Atlantic Treaty Organisation "no one would see that as a satisfactory move or the end of the matter".

That stance was echoed by three American Democratic senators who said on Monday that quitting the agreement unilaterally would be a "political and geostrategic gift to Russian Federation".


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