Donald Trump's National Security Adviser John Bolton held talks with President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Tuesday (October 23) about US plans to withdraw from a landmark Cold War era weapons treaty.
During the 90-minute meeting, Putin took Washington to task over what he called "unprovoked actions" against Moscow. Bolton reiterated US claims that Russia is in violation of the treaty.
The Russian leader also said he would like to continue the treaty talks with President Trump directly and suggested they could meet in Paris next month on the sidelines of an event to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I. Bolton said he thought Trump would be receptive to the idea.
The Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) was signed in 1987 by then-President Ronald Reagan and former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev. The treaty banned all ground-launched medium-range missiles with a range of between 500 and 5,500km.
Last week, President Trump said he would withdraw the US from the pact, saying Russia was not in compliance. Russia denies violating the treaty which was the first ever arms-control agreement to eliminate an entire class of missiles.
Russia has said it will be forced to respond in kind if the US leaves the treaty and starts to develop new missiles.
US moves to tear up the deal have been widely condemned by world leaders who say it risks returning the world to the days of Cold War nuclear brinkmanship.