US President Donald Trump has announced that the United States is withdrawing from the INF nuclear contract that regulates ground-based mid-range robots.– It is a direct threat to Europe, says Director of Foreign Affairs Institute Christer Ahlström in SVT’s News.

On Saturday, the US will withdraw from the so-called INF (Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces) agreement.

The agreement has been one of the cornerstones of European security since the Cold War. On Friday, US President Donald Trump announced that the US was withdrawing.

– It is a direct threat to Europe. It was the threat that was behind the negotiation of that agreement in 1987, says Foreign Affairs Institute Director Christer Ahlström in SVT’s News.

“The importance of nuclear weapons has increased”

The agreement, which was concluded between the United States and the then Soviet Union, means that ground-based ballistic and cruise robots with ranges between 500 and 500 kilometers will be abolished.

– We are in a completely new situation when we see that both Russia and the US place a much greater focus on nuclear weapons. So the importance of nuclear weapons has increased in the world today, says Christer Ahlström in SVT News.

So this decision today can take us a little closer to a nuclear war?

– One can say that it is a step in a process where there are many other processes that also lead to an increased role for nuclear weapons.

– It may involve the posting of short and medium distance missiles that may or may not have nuclear warheads.

“Prohibited Robot System”

The United States believes that Russia has violated the agreement for several years.

“For too long, Russia has been unjustly violating the INF agreement by secretly developing and deploying a prohibited robotic system that poses a direct threat to our allies and forces abroad,” US President announced.

Nine nuclear states

The agreement applies only to Russia and the United States, while the other nuclear states China, North Korea, India, Pakistan, Israel, the United Kingdom and France are not covered by the INF Agreement.

Sea-based mid-range robots are also not covered by the agreement.