Procedure : 2019/2574(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B8-0131/2019

Texts tabled :


Debates :

PV 13/02/2019 - 20
CRE 13/02/2019 - 20

Votes :

PV 14/02/2019 - 10.16

Texts adopted :

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to wind up the debate on the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

pursuant to Rule 123(2) of the Rules of Procedure

on the future of the INF Treaty and the impact on the EU (2019/2574(RSP))

Helmut Scholz, Merja Kyllönen, Takis Hadjigeorgiou, Tania González Peñas, Rina Ronja Kari, Marisa Matias, Kateřina Konečná, Paloma López Bermejo, Eleonora Forenza, Dimitrios Papadimoulis, Stelios Kouloglou, Sabine Lösing, Luke Ming Flanagan on behalf of the GUE/NGL Group

European Parliament resolution on the future of the INF Treaty and the impact on the EU (2019/2574(RSP))  

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to its resolution of 27 October 2016 on nuclear security and non-proliferation(1),

–  having regard to Article VI of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), which obliges states with nuclear weapons to pursue nuclear disarmament negotiations in good faith,

–  having regard to the UN Agenda for Disarmament,

–  having regard to UN Sustainable Development Goal 16, which aims to promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development,

–  having regard to the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (hereinafter the ‘INF Treaty’) of 8 December 1987 between the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR),

–  having regard to the statement of 2 February 2019 by the US Secretary of State on US intent to withdraw from the INF Treaty(2),

–  having regard to related statements by civil society organisations, notably that of 1 February 2019 by 2017 Nobel Peace Prize laureate International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) entitled ‘US withdrawal from INF Treaty puts Europe (and the world) at risk’(3),

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas the INF Treaty is fundamental for European security; whereas it required both parties to destroy their stockpiles of ground-launched nuclear and conventionally armed ballistic and cruise missiles with ranges of between 500 and 5 500 km, while prohibiting them from possessing, producing and flight-testing such missiles; whereas it has ensured the destruction of nearly 2 700 short- and medium-range missiles;

B.  whereas the INF Treaty contributed to the building and reinforcing of stability in the Cold War era by vastly reducing the number of missiles in Europe, making Europe the principal beneficiary of the INF Treaty’s success;

C.  whereas both the United States and Russia have made allegations that the other party has violated the INF Treaty; whereas both parties have failed to address their mutual concerns by means of diplomatic dialogue; whereas the Special Verification Commission established under the treaty to address, among other things, compliance concerns, has not been convened; whereas Russia recently invited US experts to examine and discuss possible violations;

D.  whereas the United States withdrew from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty in June 2002; whereas new ballistic missile defence systems have since been deployed in eastern Europe;

E.  whereas on 20 October 2018 President Trump announced that the US would withdraw from the INF Treaty as a result of Russia’s non-compliance and China’s non-participation; whereas Russia, while stating its interest in preserving the treaty, also announced plans to suspend its participation;

F.  whereas the announcement of US intent to withdraw from the INF Treaty also calls into question the likelihood of possible US-Russia cooperation in the renewal of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (hereinafter the ‘New START Treaty’) on its expiry in 2021; whereas a failure to renew the New START treaty would seriously damage the international arms control regime that has provided decades of stability regarding nuclear weapons;

G.  whereas the INF Treaty is a cornerstone for maintaining global strategic stability, world peace and regional security; whereas the preservation of the treaty would contribute to efforts to preserve other existing arms control and disarmament agreements, including the New START Treaty, as well as to create more favourable conditions for negotiations on arms limitations, disarmament and non-proliferation;

H.  whereas Europe and the world are a at a crossroads with the choice between preserving the nuclear arms control and disarmament system or facing a new arms race;

1.  Is deeply concerned at the intention of the US to withdraw from and suspend its obligations under the INF Treaty; recalls that this will pose a serious risk to European and global security and peace, increase military competition and lead to the deterioration of relations between nuclear-armed states;

2.  Calls on the United States and Russia to renew efforts to solve compliance concerns using the verification mechanism provided for in the treaty and through negotiations; urgently calls on both sides to preserve and strengthen the INF Treaty through full and strict compliance;

3.  Calls on Russia and the United States to resume constructive dialogue with the aim of reducing tensions and strengthening international security and stability and progress in reducing nuclear arms; calls on both sides to develop additional cooperative measures to increase confidence and mutual trust and reduce the possibility of misinterpretation or misunderstanding;

4.  Emphasises that the uncertain future of the INF Treaty should not put other arms control agreements in jeopardy; notably urges the United States and Russia to renew the New START treaty before it expires in 2021;

5.  Expresses deep concern at the fact that the abandonment of the INF Treaty has the potential to make Europe a theatre of nuclear confrontation between Russia and the US; strongly rejects any strategic concept which follows the logic of deterrence, a concept which has in the last century brought the world to the brink of nuclear conflict;

6.  Calls for the EU and its Member States to play a mediating role, and to facilitate a results-oriented dialogue on regional and global stability, nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation; calls for the EU to initiate negotiations with a view to building a European peace order that will guarantee the security of all, including states in the common neighbourhood of the EU and Russia, striving for disarmament, strengthening democracy and the rule of law, guaranteeing all human rights, facilitating civil society contacts and promoting trade and economic cooperation; takes the view that the OSCE could be the appropriate forum in which to launch such a discussion;

7.  Expresses serious concern about the risk of a resumption of the nuclear arms race in Europe; strongly rejects any plan for the deployment of new nuclear weapons in Europe, and calls for the immediate withdrawal of US nuclear weapons from Germany, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands; strongly opposes the ongoing military build-up in Europe and calls for this new arms race to be brought to an end;

8.  Calls for the EU and its Member States to make nuclear disarmament a foreign and security policy priority; urges the Member States to sign and ratify the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons;

9.  Deplores the fact that states with nuclear weapons continue to modernise their arsenals, delay action to reduce or eliminate their nuclear weapons and adhere to a military doctrine of nuclear deterrence; calls on states with nuclear weapons to stop immediately the qualitative improvement, development, production and stockpiling of nuclear warheads and their delivery systems, and expresses concern that this development endangers the NPT;

10.  Urgently calls on all states with nuclear weapons to engage in bilateral and multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations;

11.  Recalls that building a world without weapons of mass destruction is the only safe way to avoid the greatest potential man-made disaster; reiterates its full commitment to the preservation of effective international arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation regimes as a cornerstone of global and European security; emphasises its full support to the UN processes, to the work of the UNODA and to the Agenda for Disarmament launched by UN Secretary-General António Guterres; recalls its commitment to pursuing policies designed to move forward with the reduction and elimination of all nuclear arsenals and achieve a world without nuclear weapons;

12.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the European External Action Service, the Member States and the United Nations.



OJ C 215, 19.6.2018, p. 202.



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