Amid stalled nuclear talks, North Korea’s Kim reportedly sends message to Trump

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has sent a “conciliatory message” to U.S. President Donald Trump amid stalled nuclear negotiations, South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported on Monday. Kim’s “letter-like” message to Trump was delivered on Friday through an unspecified channel, the newspaper reported, citing an unnamed diplomatic source. The report did not include details about the substance of the message but said they related to U.S-North Korea talks. Neither the U.S. State Department nor th


North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has sent a “conciliatory message” to U.S. President Donald Trump amid stalled nuclear negotiations, South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported on Monday. Kim’s “letter-like” message to Trump was delivered on Friday through an unspecified channel, the newspaper reported, citing an unnamed diplomatic source. The report did not include details about the substance of the message but said they related to U.S-North Korea talks. Neither the U.S. State Department nor th
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-31  Authors: jonathan ernst
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, state, kim, president, stalled, koreas, korean, talks, sends, seoul, north, trump, south, report, message, letter, nuclear, reportedly


Amid stalled nuclear talks, North Korea's Kim reportedly sends message to Trump

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has sent a “conciliatory message” to U.S. President Donald Trump amid stalled nuclear negotiations, South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo newspaper reported on Monday.

Kim’s “letter-like” message to Trump was delivered on Friday through an unspecified channel, the newspaper reported, citing an unnamed diplomatic source. The report did not include details about the substance of the message but said they related to U.S-North Korea talks.

On Sunday, the office of South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in said Kim had sent a letter to his counterpart in Seoul saying he wants to hold more inter-Korean summits next year to achieve denuclearization of the peninsula.

Neither the U.S. State Department nor the U.S. Embassy in Seoul had an immediate comment about the report of Kim’s message to Trump when contacted by Reuters.

At a summit with Trump in Singapore in June, Kim vowed to work towards denuclearization.

However, both sides have struggled to make progress on this matter. They are also yet to reschedule a meeting between U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and senior North Korean official Kim Yong Chol after an abrupt cancellation in November.

Pyongyang’s state media has credited Trump for his “willingness” to continue dialogue but has also slammed the State Department for tightening sanctions.

The stalled negotiations had an impact on inter-Korean ties, including Kim’s unrealized plan to visit Seoul this year as agreed their summit in Pyongyang in September.

The Chosun Ilbo report also said Kim wrote in the letter to Moon that he would come to the South “in the near future” after giving a New Year address on Tuesday.

Kim’s New Year address provides a rare public appearance for the young leader and is closely watched by neighboring countries as it is seen setting the tone for his domestic and foreign policies.

According to Moon’s spokesman, Kim said in the letter to the South Korean president that he was sorry his previously planned trip to Seoul this year did not take place, expressing his “strong resolve” to make it happen while monitoring the situation.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-31  Authors: jonathan ernst
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, state, kim, president, stalled, koreas, korean, talks, sends, seoul, north, trump, south, report, message, letter, nuclear, reportedly


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Putin warns the threat of nuclear war should not be underestimated

Russian President Vladimir Putin warned the threat of a nuclear war should not be discounted and criticized the U.S.’ move to withdraw from an international nuclear treaty. Speaking at his annual media press conference, Putin was asked by one journalist to assess the threat of nuclear war or a third world war. “The danger of the situation is being downplayed,” Putin told the audience of over 1,000 journalists at his year-end question and answer session. So this is an important question,” he said


Russian President Vladimir Putin warned the threat of a nuclear war should not be discounted and criticized the U.S.’ move to withdraw from an international nuclear treaty. Speaking at his annual media press conference, Putin was asked by one journalist to assess the threat of nuclear war or a third world war. “The danger of the situation is being downplayed,” Putin told the audience of over 1,000 journalists at his year-end question and answer session. So this is an important question,” he said
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-20  Authors: holly ellyatt, krisztian bocsi, bloomberg, getty images
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Putin warns the threat of nuclear war should not be underestimated

Russian President Vladimir Putin warned the threat of a nuclear war should not be discounted and criticized the U.S.’ move to withdraw from an international nuclear treaty.

Speaking at his annual media press conference, Putin was asked by one journalist to assess the threat of nuclear war or a third world war.

“The danger of the situation is being downplayed,” Putin told the audience of over 1,000 journalists at his year-end question and answer session.

“It now seems to be impossible, something without crucial importance, but at the same time if something like this would happen this would lead to the collapse of the entire civilization and maybe our planet. So this is an important question,” he said via a translator.

“Unfortunately, we have this trend to underestimate the current situation. There are dangers, there are risks in our day-to-day lives. What are those risks? First and foremost, the collapse of the international system of arms control, of moving away from an arms race,” he said.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-20  Authors: holly ellyatt, krisztian bocsi, bloomberg, getty images
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North Korea says it won’t denuclearize unless the US removes threat

North Korea said Thursday it will never unilaterally give up its nuclear weapons unless the United States first removes what Pyongyang called a nuclear threat. The latest from North Korea comes as the United States and North Korea struggle over the sequencing of the denuclearization that Washington wants and the removal of international sanctions desired by Pyongyang. “The corresponding measures we have asked the United States to take aren’t difficult for the United States to commit to and carry


North Korea said Thursday it will never unilaterally give up its nuclear weapons unless the United States first removes what Pyongyang called a nuclear threat. The latest from North Korea comes as the United States and North Korea struggle over the sequencing of the denuclearization that Washington wants and the removal of international sanctions desired by Pyongyang. “The corresponding measures we have asked the United States to take aren’t difficult for the United States to commit to and carry
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-20  Authors: saul loeb, afp, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, nuclear, statement, unless, weapons, korea, threat, korean, north, states, removes, denuclearize, south, united, wont, denuclearization


North Korea says it won't denuclearize unless the US removes threat

North Korea said Thursday it will never unilaterally give up its nuclear weapons unless the United States first removes what Pyongyang called a nuclear threat. The surprisingly blunt statement jars with Seoul’s rosier presentation of the North Korean position and could rattle the fragile trilateral diplomacy to defuse a nuclear crisis that last year had many fearing war.

The latest from North Korea comes as the United States and North Korea struggle over the sequencing of the denuclearization that Washington wants and the removal of international sanctions desired by Pyongyang. The statement carried by the North’s official Korean Central News Agency also raises credibility problems for the liberal South Korean government, which has continuously claimed that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is genuinely interested in negotiating away his nuclear weapons as Seoul tries to sustain a positive atmosphere for dialogue.

The North’s comments may also be seen as proof of what outside skeptics have long said: that Kim will never voluntarily relinquish an arsenal he sees as a stronger guarantee of survival than whatever security assurances the United States might provide. The statement suggests North Korea will eventually demand the United States withdraw or significantly reduce the 28,500 American troops stationed in South Korea, a major sticking point in any disarmament deal.

Kim and President Donald Trump met June 12 in Singapore where they agreed on a vague goal for the “complete denuclearization” of the Korean Peninsula without describing when and how it would occur. The leaders are trying to arrange another meeting for early next year.

But North Korea for decades has been pushing a concept of denuclearization that bears no resemblance to the American definition, with Pyongyang vowing to pursue nuclear development until the United States removes its troops and the nuclear umbrella defending South Korea and Japan. In Thursday’s statement, the North made clear it’s sticking to its traditional stance on denuclearization. It accused Washington of twisting what had been agreed on in Singapore and driving post-summit talks into an impasse.

“The United States must now recognize the accurate meaning of the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, and especially, must study geography,” the statement said.

“When we talk about the Korean Peninsula, it includes the territory of our republic and also the entire region of (South Korea) where the United States has placed its invasive force, including nuclear weapons. When we talk about the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, it means the removal of all sources of nuclear threat, not only from the South and North but also from areas neighboring the Korean Peninsula,” the statement said.

The United States removed its tactical nuclear weapons from South Korea in the 1990s. Washington and Seoul did not immediately respond to the North Korean statement.

North Korea’s reiteration of its long-standing position on denuclearization could prove to be a major setback for diplomacy, which was revived early this year following a series of provocative nuclear and missile tests that left Kim and Trump spending most of 2017 exchanging personal insults and war threats. The statement could jeopardize a second Trump-Kim summit as the United States may have difficulty negotiating further if the North ties the future of its nukes to the U.S. military presence in the South, analysts said.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in, who met Kim three times this year and lobbied hard for the Trump-Kim meeting, has said Kim wasn’t demanding the withdrawal of U.S. troops from the Korean Peninsula as a precondition for abandoning his nuclear weapons. But Kim has never made such comments in public.

“The blunt statement could be an indicator that the North has no intentions to return to the negotiation table anytime soon,” said Shin Beomchul, a senior analyst at Seoul’s Asan Institute for Policy Studies. “It’s clear that the North intends to keep its nukes and turn the diplomatic process into a bilateral arms reduction negotiation with the United States, rather than a process where it unilaterally surrenders its program.”

Yang Moo-jin, a professor at Seoul’s University of North Korean Studies, said it’s unlikely that the North would push things too far and allow the momentum for dialogue to collapse. Pyongyang has been strengthening its demands for the removal of sanctions and its latest statement is another attempt to win concessions from Washington, Yang said.

“Pyongyang is sending a message to Washington that confrontation and dialogue cannot coexist,” Yang said.

The nuclear negotiations between Washington and Pyongyang have stalled since the Trump-Kim meeting. The United States wants North Korea to provide a detailed account of nuclear and missile facilities that would be inspected and dismantled under a potential deal, while the North is insisting that sanctions be lifted first.

Since engaging in diplomacy, North Korea has unilaterally dismantled its nuclear testing ground and parts of a missile engine test facility and suspended nuclear and long-range missile tests. However, none of those moves were verified by outsiders, and most experts say they fall short as material steps toward denuclearization. In the third meeting between Kim and Moon in September, the North also said it would dismantle its main nuclear facility in Nyongbyon if the United States takes “corresponding measures,” which the state media later specified as sanctions relief.

Kim declared his nuclear force was complete after the torrent of weapons tests in 2017, including the detonation of a purported thermonuclear weapon and three test-flights of intercontinental ballistic missiles potentially capable of reaching the U.S. mainland. Several reports from private analysts in recent weeks have accused North Korea of continuing nuclear and missile development, citing details from commercial satellite imagery.

“If we unilaterally give up our nuclear weapons without any security assurance despite being first on the U.S. list of targets for pre-emptive nuclear strikes, that wouldn’t be denuclearization — it would rather be a creation of a defenseless state where the balance in nuclear strategic strength is destroyed and the crisis of a nuclear war is brought forth,” the KCNA said.

“The corresponding measures we have asked the United States to take aren’t difficult for the United States to commit to and carry out. We are just asking the United States to put an end to its hostile policies (on North Korea) and remove the unjust sanctions, things it can do even without a snap of a finger.”

The North Korean statement came a day after Stephen Biegun, the Trump administration’s special envoy on North Korea, told reporters in South Korea that Washington was reviewing easing travel restrictions on North Korea to facilitate humanitarian shipments to help resolve the impasse in nuclear negotiations.

During his four-day visit, Biegun plans to discuss with South Korean officials the allies’ policies on North Korea, including the enforcement of sanctions. The meetings are likely to include conversations about a groundbreaking ceremony the Koreas plan to hold at the border village of Panmunjom next week for an aspirational project to reconnect their roads and railways.

The North has yet to respond to Biegun’s comments.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-20  Authors: saul loeb, afp, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, nuclear, statement, unless, weapons, korea, threat, korean, north, states, removes, denuclearize, south, united, wont, denuclearization


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Russia tests hypersonic missile that could be ready for war by 2022

The latest development means the U.S. will have to make up even more ground as Russia and China bolster their arsenals with hypersonic weapons at a breakneck pace. Clearly, there is a qualitative increase in the threat level with the development of a missile like Tsirkon, which is significant.” Of the six weapons Putin unveiled in March, CNBC has learned that two of them will be ready for war by 2020, according to sources with direct knowledge of U.S. intelligence reports. When asked about Mosco


The latest development means the U.S. will have to make up even more ground as Russia and China bolster their arsenals with hypersonic weapons at a breakneck pace. Clearly, there is a qualitative increase in the threat level with the development of a missile like Tsirkon, which is significant.” Of the six weapons Putin unveiled in March, CNBC has learned that two of them will be ready for war by 2020, according to sources with direct knowledge of U.S. intelligence reports. When asked about Mosco
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-20  Authors: amanda macias, kirill kudryavtsev, afp, getty images, maxim shemetov
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, ready, russia, putin, 2022, weapons, development, treaty, nuclear, tests, war, missiles, missile, hypersonic


Russia tests hypersonic missile that could be ready for war by 2022

Putin warns the threat of nuclear war should not be underestimated 1 Hour Ago | 01:39

The U.S. intelligence report, according to one source, noted that production of the missile is slated to begin in 2021 and it will join the Kremlin’s arsenal no earlier than 2022.

The latest development means the U.S. will have to make up even more ground as Russia and China bolster their arsenals with hypersonic weapons at a breakneck pace.

Yet, James Acton, co-director of the Nuclear Policy Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, countered notions that Russian and Chinese developments would eclipse U.S. hypersonic efforts.

“I don’t necessarily agree with the characterization that the U.S. is on its back foot. All of the evidence I see is that the U.S. has significantly more ambitious goals than the Russians and Chinese,” he said. “I don’t want to pretend that these developments are irrelevant and that the U.S. can just ignore them. Clearly, there is a qualitative increase in the threat level with the development of a missile like Tsirkon, which is significant.”

Acton added: “But my point is that the breathless reaction you often hear to these developments, I think, can be overestimated.”

Read more: Hypersonic weapons: What they are, and why the U.S. can’t defend against them

The revelations about the ship-based missile come a little more than nine months after Russian President Vladimir Putin touted his nation’s growing hypersonic arsenal as “invincible.” Moscow’s sprint to field this new breed of weapon has sparked fears over a budding arms race.

“I want to tell all those who have fueled the arms race over the last 15 years, sought to win unilateral advantages over Russia, introduced unlawful sanctions aimed to contain our country’s development: You have failed to contain Russia,” Putin said during his March national address.

Of the six weapons Putin unveiled in March, CNBC has learned that two of them will be ready for war by 2020, according to sources with direct knowledge of U.S. intelligence reports.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon awarded two multimillion-dollar hypersonic weapon contracts to Lockheed Martin earlier this year.

When asked about Moscow’s race to develop hypersonic weapons, the Pentagon reiterated an outstanding request to bring Russia back into compliance with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, Treaty.

“U.S. concerns right now are focused on bringing Russia back into compliance with current treaties and international agreements,” Defense Department spokesman Eric Pahon told CNBC.

In October, Trump announced his decision to withdraw from the INF Treaty, a Cold War-era agreement between the world’s two greatest nuclear powers.

Russia, Trump said, has violated the arms agreement by building and fielding the banned weapons “for many years.”

The treaty, signed in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev, prohibited the development and deployment of midrange nuclear-tipped missiles. The agreement forced each country to dismantle more than 2,500 missiles with ranges of 310 to 3,420 miles from their arsenals.

In short, the treaty has kept nuclear-tipped missiles off the European continent for the last 30 years.

On Thursday, Putin criticized the U.S.′ move to withdraw from the nuclear treaty and warned that a nuclear war should not be discounted.

“They’re making another step, and they are withdrawing from the INF treaty, so what’s going to come out of that? It’s hard to imagine what will come next,” Putin said during an annual news conference.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-20  Authors: amanda macias, kirill kudryavtsev, afp, getty images, maxim shemetov
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, ready, russia, putin, 2022, weapons, development, treaty, nuclear, tests, war, missiles, missile, hypersonic


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Russia’s Putin: Nothing to stop us adding other states to nuclear pact

President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that there was nothing to stop Russia and the United States agreeing that other countries could join the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty signed by Washington and Moscow during the Cold War. The United States has accused Russia of flouting the nuclear pact, allegations Moscow denies, and has threatened to pull out. Other countries are able to develop missiles banned under the treaty because they are not signatories. “What stops (us) starting talks


President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that there was nothing to stop Russia and the United States agreeing that other countries could join the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty signed by Washington and Moscow during the Cold War. The United States has accused Russia of flouting the nuclear pact, allegations Moscow denies, and has threatened to pull out. Other countries are able to develop missiles banned under the treaty because they are not signatories. “What stops (us) starting talks
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-18  Authors: mikhail metzel, tass
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, united, nuclear, starting, moscow, states, countries, russia, pact, putin, russias, treaty, adding, washington, stop


Russia's Putin: Nothing to stop us adding other states to nuclear pact

President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that there was nothing to stop Russia and the United States agreeing that other countries could join the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty signed by Washington and Moscow during the Cold War.

The United States has accused Russia of flouting the nuclear pact, allegations Moscow denies, and has threatened to pull out. Other countries are able to develop missiles banned under the treaty because they are not signatories.

“What stops (us) starting talks on them joining the current agreement or starting to discuss parameters for a new accord?” Putin asked.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-18  Authors: mikhail metzel, tass
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Putin: Russia will make banned missiles if US exits arms treaty

Russia will develop missiles now banned under the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty if the United States exits the arms control pact and starts making such weapons, President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday. The United States delivered Russia a 60-day ultimatum on Tuesday to come clean about what Washington says is a violation of the 1987 nuclear arms control treaty, saying it would be forced to start a six-month process of withdrawal if nothing changes. Putin, in televised comments, acc


Russia will develop missiles now banned under the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty if the United States exits the arms control pact and starts making such weapons, President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday. The United States delivered Russia a 60-day ultimatum on Tuesday to come clean about what Washington says is a violation of the 1987 nuclear arms control treaty, saying it would be forced to start a six-month process of withdrawal if nothing changes. Putin, in televised comments, acc
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-05  Authors: grigory dukor
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Putin: Russia will make banned missiles if US exits arms treaty

Russia will develop missiles now banned under the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty if the United States exits the arms control pact and starts making such weapons, President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday.

The United States delivered Russia a 60-day ultimatum on Tuesday to come clean about what Washington says is a violation of the 1987 nuclear arms control treaty, saying it would be forced to start a six-month process of withdrawal if nothing changes.

Putin, in televised comments, accused the United States of blaming Russia for violations as a pretext for Washington to exit the pact.

Putin noted that many countries produce missiles banned under the INF treaty, but that Moscow and Washington had undertaken to limit themselves with the accord signed in 1987.

“Now it seems our American partners believe that the situation has changed so much that the United States must also have such a weapon. What’s our response? It’s simple: in that case we will also do this,” he said.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-05  Authors: grigory dukor
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Putin threatens to develop more nukes in response to Trump ultimatum

Russian President Vladimir Putin upped the ante Wednesday by saying he is prepared to develop nuclear-tipped missiles if the U.S. withdraws from a Cold War-era arms agreement. Putin, in televised comments, said Moscow would develop midrange nuclear missiles, a weapon that is currently banned from U.S. and Russian arsenals under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, treaty. The INF treaty, signed in 1987 between President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, prohibited the


Russian President Vladimir Putin upped the ante Wednesday by saying he is prepared to develop nuclear-tipped missiles if the U.S. withdraws from a Cold War-era arms agreement. Putin, in televised comments, said Moscow would develop midrange nuclear missiles, a weapon that is currently banned from U.S. and Russian arsenals under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, treaty. The INF treaty, signed in 1987 between President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, prohibited the
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Putin threatens to develop more nukes in response to Trump ultimatum

Russian President Vladimir Putin upped the ante Wednesday by saying he is prepared to develop nuclear-tipped missiles if the U.S. withdraws from a Cold War-era arms agreement.

Putin, in televised comments, said Moscow would develop midrange nuclear missiles, a weapon that is currently banned from U.S. and Russian arsenals under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, treaty.

The INF treaty, signed in 1987 between President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, prohibited the development and deployment of ground-launched nuclear missiles with ranges of 310 miles to 3,420 miles.

President Donald Trump has promised to withdraw from that treaty, claiming Russia has been cheating. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo offered an ultimatum to Russia on Tuesday. The Russian leader suggested the U.S. was the one itching to escalate the arms race.

“Now it seems our American partners believe that the situation has changed so much that the United States must also have such a weapon. What’s our response? It’s simple: in that case we will also do this,” Putin said.

U.S. arms experts said the Kremlin needs to take responsibility.

“Russia’s violation is unacceptable and requires a firm U.S. and NATO diplomatic, economic and treaty-compliant military response strategy,” Kingston Reif, director of disarmament research at the Arms Control Association, told CNBC following Putin’s remarks.

“Russia’s had treaty-violating missiles for years, so they’re not fooling anybody by alleging that they’d have to start building treaty-violating missiles. It’s a transparent ploy to put the onus back on the U.S., but it won’t work,” said Thomas Karako, director of the Missile Defense Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Putin’s response came a day after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo cited material evidence that Russia has quietly added nuclear-tipped missiles that are currently banned by the INF treaty to its colossal arsenal.

Russia, Pompeo said, has developed “multiple battalions of the SSC-8 missiles,” a move that falls outside of the Cold War-era arms agreement.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-05  Authors: amanda macias, dursun aydemir, anadolu agency, getty images
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Here is how many nuclear weapons US and Russia have

The two leaders of the world’s nuclear club are threatening to withdraw from an arms control agreement, a move that will allow each country to bolster its arsenal with more nukes. Russian President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that he will develop ground-launched nuclear missiles if the U.S. withdraws from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, treaty. The pact, signed by the U.S. and Soviet Union in 1987, prohibits the development of midrange nuclear-tipped missiles. Of the 14,500 nucl


The two leaders of the world’s nuclear club are threatening to withdraw from an arms control agreement, a move that will allow each country to bolster its arsenal with more nukes. Russian President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that he will develop ground-launched nuclear missiles if the U.S. withdraws from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, treaty. The pact, signed by the U.S. and Soviet Union in 1987, prohibits the development of midrange nuclear-tipped missiles. Of the 14,500 nucl
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-05  Authors: amanda macias, brendan smialowski, afp, getty images, kcna, sasha mordovets, getty images news
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, weapons, arms, russia, missiles, nucleartipped, control, worlds, club, nukes, country, nuclear


Here is how many nuclear weapons US and Russia have

The two leaders of the world’s nuclear club are threatening to withdraw from an arms control agreement, a move that will allow each country to bolster its arsenal with more nukes.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that he will develop ground-launched nuclear missiles if the U.S. withdraws from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, treaty.

The pact, signed by the U.S. and Soviet Union in 1987, prohibits the development of midrange nuclear-tipped missiles. The agreement forced each country to dismantle more than 2,500 missiles with ranges of 310 to 3,420 miles. The arms ban kept nuclear-tipped cruise missiles off the European continent for three decades.

Of the 14,500 nuclear weapons on the planet, Russia and the United States own the lion’s share, with a combined total of approximately 13,350 nukes. The remaining 1,150 weapons are held by seven countries.

North Korea, the latest unwelcome addition to the world’s nuke club, remains the only country to test nuclear weapons in this century.

While the exact number of nukes in each country’s arsenal is closely guarded, below is a breakdown of how many weapons exist, according to estimates from the Arms Control Association and Federation of American Scientists.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-05  Authors: amanda macias, brendan smialowski, afp, getty images, kcna, sasha mordovets, getty images news
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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani threatens to close Strait of Hormuz

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani threatened on Tuesday to close the strait of Hormuz, the world’s busiest sea lane for oil shipments, if the United States moves to block the Islamic Republic’s oil exports. In an interview with Iranian State TV President Hassan Rouhani was quoted as saying: “if someday, the United States decides to block Iran’s oil [exports], no oil will be exported from the Persian Gulf.” The Strait of Hormuz is a key waterway for the transport of oil. In July, Rouhani made simi


Iranian President Hassan Rouhani threatened on Tuesday to close the strait of Hormuz, the world’s busiest sea lane for oil shipments, if the United States moves to block the Islamic Republic’s oil exports. In an interview with Iranian State TV President Hassan Rouhani was quoted as saying: “if someday, the United States decides to block Iran’s oil [exports], no oil will be exported from the Persian Gulf.” The Strait of Hormuz is a key waterway for the transport of oil. In July, Rouhani made simi
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Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-04  Authors: leila gharagozlou, tom dichristopher, iranian presidency, handout, anadolu agency, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, hassan, rouhani, threatens, sanctions, irans, iranian, close, waterway, strait, president, iran, oil, nuclear, hormuz


Iranian President Hassan Rouhani threatens to close Strait of Hormuz

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani threatened on Tuesday to close the strait of Hormuz, the world’s busiest sea lane for oil shipments, if the United States moves to block the Islamic Republic’s oil exports.

In an interview with Iranian State TV President Hassan Rouhani was quoted as saying: “if someday, the United States decides to block Iran’s oil [exports], no oil will be exported from the Persian Gulf.”

The Trump administration restored sanctions on Iran’s energy industry on Nov. 5. The administration is trying to choke off Iran’s economy in order to pressure Tehran to accept tighter restrictions on its nuclear program, cease ballistic missile tests and end its support for U.S.-designated terror groups.

The sanctions have already cut Iran’s exports by about 1 million barrels per day, but Rouhani is vowing to continue shipping crude.

The Strait of Hormuz is a key waterway for the transport of oil. In 2016, 18.5 billion barrels of crude passed through the waterway, or about one-third of all seaborne-traded crude oil, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

This is not Rouhani’s first threat of taking such action. In July, Rouhani made similar comments that raised concerns about a confrontation in the Strait of Hormuz.

The Iranian president is facing pressure from hardliners to take a more aggressive stance towards the West since Trump withdrew from a 2015 nuclear accord, Rouhani’s top foreign policy achievement.

Iran has not made a serious attempt to close the strait since the 1980s. Iran threatened to shut down the Strait of Hormuz in 2011 and 2012, as President Barack Obama marshaled support for international sanctions on Iran over its alleged research into nuclear weapons development.

Military planners generally acknowledged that Iran has the capability to temporarily close off the waterway, but say the U.S. would be able to quickly reopen the strait.

John Kilduff, founding partner at energy hedge fund Again Capital, says that the commentary now is “just bluster” and one that oil analysts have heard many times before. However, he said oil prices would spike were the strait to be shut.

Kilduff points out that the closing of the strait wouldn’t just harm global oil industry but, would hurt Iran itself,” it’s not in their best interest to do it, even though they are getting hammered now with sanctions, it could do long term harm to Iran.”


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-12-04  Authors: leila gharagozlou, tom dichristopher, iranian presidency, handout, anadolu agency, getty images
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, hassan, rouhani, threatens, sanctions, irans, iranian, close, waterway, strait, president, iran, oil, nuclear, hormuz


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The other big Trump-Putin story: Nuclear treaty hangs in the balance

WASHINGTON — As U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin tease on whether or not they will meet at the annual G-20 summit, a crucial nuclear weapons treaty between the world’s two greatest nuclear powers hangs in the balance. Last month, Trump announced his decision to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, Treaty, an agreement that eliminated an entire class of nuclear weapons from U.S. and Russian arsenals. Russia, Trump says, has violated the arms


WASHINGTON — As U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin tease on whether or not they will meet at the annual G-20 summit, a crucial nuclear weapons treaty between the world’s two greatest nuclear powers hangs in the balance. Last month, Trump announced his decision to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, Treaty, an agreement that eliminated an entire class of nuclear weapons from U.S. and Russian arsenals. Russia, Trump says, has violated the arms
The other big Trump-Putin story: Nuclear treaty hangs in the balance Cached Page below :
Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-11-30  Authors: amanda macias, brendan smialowski, afp, getty images, kevin lamarque
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, nuclear, balance, inf, agreement, trumpputin, hangs, big, trump, president, weapons, treaty, russia, missiles, told


The other big Trump-Putin story: Nuclear treaty hangs in the balance

WASHINGTON — As U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin tease on whether or not they will meet at the annual G-20 summit, a crucial nuclear weapons treaty between the world’s two greatest nuclear powers hangs in the balance.

Last month, Trump announced his decision to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces, or INF, Treaty, an agreement that eliminated an entire class of nuclear weapons from U.S. and Russian arsenals.

Russia, Trump says, has violated the arms agreement by building and fielding the banned weapons “for many years.” On behalf of the administration, national security adviser John Bolton flew to Moscow to personally deliver the decision to the Kremlin.

“It is the American position that Russia is in violation,” Bolton told reporters after a meeting with Putin. “It is Russia’s position that they are not in violation. So one has to ask, ‘How do you convince the Russians to come back into compliance with obligations they don’t think they’re violating?'”

Read more: The US and Russia control the lion’s share of the world’s nuclear weapons

The INF treaty, signed in 1987 between President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev, prohibited the development and deployment of midrange nuclear-tipped missiles. The agreement forced each country to dismantle more than 2,500 missiles with ranges of 310 to 3,420 miles from their arsenals.

In short, the treaty has kept nuclear-tipped missiles off the European continent for the last 30 years.

Gorbachev criticized Trump for threatening to withdraw from the nuclear disarmament treaty, saying the move “is not the work of a great mind.”

What’s more, the move rattled arms control experts who feared the scrapped treaty would spark a nuclear weapons race.

“Withdrawing from the INF treaty only increases the threat to allies and let’s Russia off the hook,” Thomas Karako, director of the Missile Defense Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, told CNBC.

“This is a colossal mistake,” Jeffrey Lewis, a nuclear-weapons analyst at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Monterey, California, told The Guardian. “Russia gets to violate the treaty and Trump takes the blame,” he added.


Company: cnbc, Activity: cnbc, Date: 2018-11-30  Authors: amanda macias, brendan smialowski, afp, getty images, kevin lamarque
Keywords: news, cnbc, companies, nuclear, balance, inf, agreement, trumpputin, hangs, big, trump, president, weapons, treaty, russia, missiles, told


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