President Donald Trump sudden or unexpected decision to withdraw from the 1992 Open Skies Treaty has posed unprecedented challenges, generated extensive debates among Russian politicians and experts, and equally worried are leaders in Europe and Asia.
The Open Skies Treaty is the third important military pact that Trump has withdrawn from since coming to office in January 2017. He also dropped the 2015 JCPOA agreement to prevent Iran from advancing its nuclear weapons program and the 1988 Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty with Russia. In both cases, Trump accused the other side of violating treaty requirements.
Russian Foreign Ministry issued an official statement May 22, describing the exit decision a deplorable development for European security. That said, Moscow was not surprised by Washington’s decision, which characterizes its approach to discarding the entire package of arms control agreements and trust-building measures in the military sphere.
The United States will gain nothing by withdrawing from the Treaty on Open Skies, Chairman of the Russian Federation Council (the upper house of parliament) Foreign Affairs Committee Konstantin Kosachev wrote on Facebook.
According to him, the Trump administration’s move is harmful to the US interests so it is hard to understand its logic.
“One can only suspect that the US authorities seek to destroy the current world order. The White House has sent another signal to US allies. Will they show unconditional support, like they always do?” Kosachev said.
In his view, the US president is determined to dismantle the entire mechanism of ensuring global security.
“There is no other way to explain this not only destructive but in many ways clumsy step that the White House has taken,” the Russian senator stressed.