Putin suspends nuclear arms treaty with US

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MOSCOW – Accusing the West of escalating the Ukraine conflict, President Vladimir Putin suspended Russian participation in a nuclear arms reduction treaty with the United States during a speech on Tuesday.

In a scathing state of the nation address to Russian lawmakers ahead of the first anniversary of the military campaign, Putin said that Russia would keep fighting in Ukraine.accusing the West of wanting “to be done with us once and for all”, Putin said Russia was “forced” to suspend the New START treaty but would not pull out of the agreement altogether.the 2010 treaty is the last major US-Russia arms control pact still in force but it has frayed in recent years, with accusations from Washington that Moscow was not complying with it.

A day earlier, US President Joe Biden made a surprise visit to Kyiv and promised additional arms deliveries for Ukraine.referring to the conflict in Ukraine, Putin said: “step by step, we will carefully and systematically solve the aims that face us.”He said it was “impossible to defeat Russia on the battlefield”. “The responsibility for fueling the Ukrainian conflict, for its escalation, for the number of victims… lies completely with Western elites,” Putin said.Putin also issued a warning to critics within Russia, saying: “Those who have embarked on the path of betrayal of Russia must be held accountable under the law.”

Turning to the economy, Putin said sanctions against Russia had not succeeded and were in fact hurting the West by raising energy prices. “They have not succeeded and will not succeed,” he said.

“The Russian economy has proved much more resilient than the West expected.”

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