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Russia warns of retaliation as Trump says the US will exit nuclear weapons treaty

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President Donald Trump said Washington will exit the Cold-War era treaty that eliminated a class of nuclear weapons due to Russian violations, triggering a warning of retaliatory measures from Moscow.

The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, negotiated by then-President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in 1987, required elimination of short-range and intermediate-range nuclear and conventional missiles by both countries.

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“Russia has not, unfortunately, honored the agreement so we’re going to terminate the agreement and we’re going to pull out,” Trump told reporters on Saturday after a rally in Nevada.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Sunday that a unilateral U.S. withdrawal would be “very dangerous” and lead to a “military-technical” retaliation.

U.S. authorities believe Moscow is developing and has deployed a ground-launched system in breach of the INF treaty that could allow it to launch a nuclear strike on Europe at short notice. Russia has consistently denied any such violation.

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U.S. President Donald Trump speaks with reporters before departure from Elko Regional Airport in Elko, Nevada, U.S., October 20, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Trump said the United States will develop the weapons unless Russia and China agree to a halt on development.

China is not a party to the treaty and has invested heavily in conventional missiles, while the INF has banned U.S possession of ground- launched ballistic missiles or cruise missiles of ranges between 500 and 5,500 km (311 and 3,418 miles).

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Trump’s national security adviser, John Bolton, will visit Moscow next week.

Ryabkov, in comments reported by state-controlled RIA news agency, said if the United States withdrew, Russia would have no choice but to retaliate, including taking unspecified measures of a “military-technical nature”.

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“But we would rather things did not get that far,” RIA quoted him as saying.

TASS news agency quoted him as saying withdrawal “would be a very dangerous step”, and it was Washington and not Moscow that was failing to comply with the treaty.

He said the Trump administration was using the treaty in an attempt to blackmail the Kremlin, putting global security at risk. “…We will, of course, accept no ultimatums or blackmail methods,” Interfax quoted him as saying.

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British defense minister Gavin Williamson, in comments reported by the Financial Times, said London stood “resolute” behind Washington over the issue, and that the Kremlin was making a mockery of the agreement.

Reporting by Jeff Mason; Additional reporting by Idrees Ali and Polina Devitt; editing by John Stonestreet

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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White House officials stumped when asked to explain Trump’s attempt to ‘order’ companies to stop business with China

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This Friday, President Trump raised eyebrows with his latest series of tweets regarding China, saying he's 'ordering' America companies to "immediately start looking for an alternative to China, including bringing your companies HOME and making your products in the USA."

Additionally, Trump said he was ordering "all U.S. postal carriers, including FedEx, Amazon, UPS and United States Post Office, “to SEARCH FOR & REFUSE all deliveries of Fentanyl from China (or anywhere else!)." Trump's declaration was in response to China announcing this Friday that it would retaliate against the U.S. with 5% and 10% on $75 billion of U.S. imports.

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Fox News financial experts baffled by Trump’s latest attacks on his own Federal Reserve chairman

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Two financial experts on Fox News couldn't figure out why President Donald Trump was lashing out at the Federal Reserve chairman on Friday.

Trump has continually berated Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell, who the president nominated in 2017. Trump believes that Powell should not have raised interest rates and has not moved quickly enough to cut them.

On Friday, Trump questioned whether Powell was a “bigger enemy” to the United States than Chinese President Xi Jinping. Trump's attacks came shortly after Powell delivered a speech in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

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‘This is not a joke’: Trump-loving professor fumes after his QAnon rant results in bursts of laughter

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An Arizona community college professor melted down after students laughed at his presentation of a right-wing conspiracy theory.

Adjunct professor Douglas Belmore, who teaches English at Mesa Community College, showed 14-minute YouTube video in at least two of his classes promoting an online conspiracy theory about satanic pedophiles that have allegedly infiltrated the government, media and entertainment industry, reported the Phoenix New Times.

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