MOSCOW (AP) - A top Russian general said Thursday that Moscow may unilaterally opt out of a Soviet-era arms reduction treaty with the United States, Russian news agencies reported.
Gen. Yuri Baluyevsky, the chief of the Russian military's General Staff, was quoted by ITAR-Tass and Interfax as saying that Russia could pull out of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, negotiated between Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and U.S. President Ronald Reagan in 1987.
He said the decision would depend on the United States' actions with its proposed missile defense system, parts of which Washington is seeking to deploy in Poland and the Czech Republic.
The treaty eliminated an entire class of medium-range missiles that had been based in Europe.
Baluyevsky's comments come after President Vladimir Putin said on Saturday that the INF treaty no longer serves Russia's interests.