US Defence Secretary Esper supports placing American intermediate-range missiles in Asia

US Defence Secretary Esper supports placing American intermediate-range missiles in Asia
  • Clock-gray 14:18
  • calendar-gray 03 August 2019

US Secretary of Defence Mark Esper announced on Saturday that the he is in favour of deploying American ground-launched intermediate-range missiles in Asia, APA reports citing Sputnik.

"We would like to deploy a capability sooner rather than later", the official told reporters on a plane to Sydney at the start of his week-long tour to the Asia-Pacific region. "I would prefer months ... But these things tend to take longer than you expect".

The US officially withdrew from the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty on 2 August after suspending it in February. Both Washington and Moscow have accused each other of violating the accord, but the US decided to abandon the deal, refusing to negotiate the issue with Russia.

He didn't specify the destination of the weapons, noting that Washington usually discusses such issues with its allies.

The United States announced in February that it would be suspending its obligations under the INF Treaty, claiming that Russia had violated it by developing the 9M729 missile.

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