Missile contracts surge as US exits arms treaty | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, May 03, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:21 AM, May 03, 2019

Missile contracts surge as US exits arms treaty

Washington has signed more than $1 billion in new missile contracts in the three months since it announced plans to withdraw from a key Cold War-era arms treaty, campaigners said yesterday.

“The withdrawal from the INF Treaty has fired the starting pistol on a new Cold War,” warned Beatrice Fihn, who heads the Nobel Peace Prize-winning International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN).

US President Donald Trump announced last October that his country would leave the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) agreement concluded between the US and the former Soviet Union in 1987.

Washington, which accused Russia of violating the treaty through a new missile system, began the official process of withdrawing from the pact in February.

Russian President Vladimir Putin responded by saying Moscow would also leave the INF treaty, which is considered the cornerstone of global arms control.

The report detailed over $1.1 billion in new contracts with six mainly US companies.

“Congress should investigate the lobbying roles of Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Raytheon who took the lion’s share of these contracts,” Fihn said in a statement.

At a global level, the report found that governments are currently contracting at least $116 billion (102 billion euros) to private companies in France, India, Italy, the Netherlands, Britain and the US for the production, development and stockpiling of nuclear weapons.

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