March 1, 2018 / 8:27 PM / a year ago

Putin nuclear speech shows Russia violated INF treaty obligations - U.S. State Dept

Russian President Vladimir Putin addresses the Federal Assembly, including the State Duma parliamentarians, members of the Federation Council, regional governors and other high-ranking officials, in Moscow, Russia March 1, 2018. Sputnik/Alexei Nikolskyi/Kremlin via REUTERS

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. State Department accused Russia on Thursday of developing destabilising nuclear weapons in violation of its treaty obligations after Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered a speech unveiling a new array of nuclear weapons.

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Putin’s speech showed Russia had violated its obligations under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces treaty. She also criticized an animated video played during his remarks, saying it appeared to depict an attack on the United States.

“It was certainly unfortunate to have watched the video animation that depicted a nuclear attack on the United States,” Nauert told a news briefing. “We don’t regard that as the behaviour of a responsible international player.”

Reporting by Arshad Mohammed; Writing by David Alexander; Editing by Eric Beech

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