Russian and American officials have held last-ditch talks over a landmark Cold War missile treaty in Beijing—but the discussions have reportedly ended without any agreement being reached. The U.S. is now expected to begin pulling out of the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty (INF) this weekend unless Moscow agrees to destroy a missile Washington says is in violation of the agreement. “Unfortunately, there is no progress,” Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov was quoted as saying by Moscow’s RIA news agency. “As far as we understand, the next step is coming, the next phase begins, namely the phase of the United States stopping its obligations under the INF, which will evidently happen this coming weekend.” Moscow has refused to destroy the Novator 9M729 missile, which is thought to have a range that falls between 500km and 5,500km—which would be illegal under the treaty. Donald Trump said last October that the U.S. would withdraw from the treaty in protest against the new missiles.
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