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U.S. disappointed at Russia's treaty suspension
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09:57, July 15, 2007

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The United States expressed disappointment on Saturday over Russia's suspension of its participation in the Treaty on Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE).

"We're disappointed Russia has suspended its participation for now," said White House spokesman Gordon Johndroe in a statement.

"But we'll continue to have discussions with them in the coming months on the best way to proceed in this area, that is in the interest of all parties involved and provides for security in Europe," Johndroe said.

The White House made the comment hours after President Vladimir Putin signed a decree suspending Russia's participation in the Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty due to, what the Kremlin said in a statement, "extraordinary circumstances ... which affect the security of the Russian Federation and require immediate measures. "

The Treaty on Conventional Forces in Europe signed by 22 states in Paris on November 19, 1990, represented an agreement between NATO members and Warsaw Treaty countries. It was aimed at establishing a balance in Europe by cutting weapons of conventional armed forces.

The treaty, which came into force on Nov. 9, 1992, limits deployments of tanks and troops in countries belonging to NATO and the former Warsaw Pact in eastern Europe and lays down measures aimed at confidence-building, transparency and cooperation between member states.

Russia had threatened several times to withdraw from the CFE when it has been at odds with the United States over U.S. plans to install a missile defense shield in Eastern Europe.

During the CFE treaty suspension, Russia will not be bound by any conventional weapons limits. Information provision and inspections will be suspended for some time, the Russia Foreign Ministry said in a statement following the Kremlin announcement.

Source: Xinhua

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