(Reuters) – The European armed forces treaty from which Moscow is to withdraw is contrary to Russia’s security interests, Russia’s envoy in charge of the withdrawal said in remarks published early on Monday.
Russia’s parliament is to decide on Monday when to formally denounce the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), following President Vladimir Putin’s decree on May 10.
“Any illusions of those who still hoped that Russia will return to the treaty – they will disappear,” Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said in an interview with Parliamentskaya Gazeta, a weekly published by Russia’s parliament.
“The CFE Treaty, due to the changed situation, is contrary to our security interests. This obvious fact will now have to be recognised in the West.”
Ryabkov was appointed last week to represent Putin during parliamentary proceedings on denouncing the treaty, which aimed to regulate the number of forces deployed by Warsaw Pact and NATO countries.
Russia announced in 2015 that it was completely halting its participation in the treaty.
(Reporting by Lidia Kelly in Melbourne; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)