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Trump proposes new missile treaty with potential to include India

US President Donald Trump has proposed a new nuclear missiles treaty that could possibly include India as he delivered the State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress. Some of India’s Prithvi and Agni class missiles could fall under the ambit of such a treaty.

Feb 6, 2019 13:26 IST
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US President Donald Trump has proposed a new nuclear missiles treaty that could possibly include India as he delivered the State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress.

Defending his decision to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty with Russia, he said in a speech on February 5, 2019, "perhaps we can negotiate a different agreement, adding China and others, or perhaps we can't, in which case, we will outspend and out-innovate all others by far.”

Key Highlights

The INF treaty, which was signed by President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Communist Party General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev, banned land-based missiles of 1,000 to 5,000 kilometres.

Some of the Prithvi and Agni class missiles in India's arsenal could fall under the ambit of such a treaty, as well as some of Pakistan's Babur, Shaheen and Ghauri missiles.

Trump defended his decision to withdraw from the INF treaty stating that Russia repeatedly violated its terms.

While stating that the US could possibly negotiate a new agreement, Trump did not make any direct references to India or region.

On Afghanistan

Trump in his speech touched upon US negotiations with the Taliban in Afghanistan and emphasised on the need to reach a political settlement in Afghanistan.

He said that his administration is holding constructive talks with a number of Afghan groups, including the Taliban.

He stated that as they make progress in these negotiations, they will be able to reduce their troop presence and focus on counter-terrorism.

Besides, Trump asked for support for Reciprocal Trade Act, under which, if another country places an unfair tariff on an American product, then America would be able to charge them the exact same tariff on the same product that they sell to them.

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