The Trump administration has officially withdrawn from the Open Skies Treaty, six months after the start of the process of leaving.
“On 22 May 2020, the United States exercised its right under Article XV (2) of the Treaty of the Outdoors by notifying the depositaries of the Treaty and all participating States of their decision to withdraw from the Treaty with effect from six months from the date of notification, ”said Deputy Deputy Spokeswoman Cale Brown in a statement.
“After six months, the US withdrawal took effect on November 22, 2020, and the United States is no longer a State Party to the Open Skies Treaty,” Brown added.
The Cold War agreement was reached to allow nations to conduct flyovers by other allies in an attempt to gather military data and other intelligence on neighboring foreign enemies.
In a statement issued Sunday late. Bob Menendez (DN.J.) called the administration’s withdrawal “ruthless” and encouraged the elected president Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump campaign documents for new recount in Georgia GOP senator congratulates Biden says Trump must accept results Judge rejects Trump camp trial in Pennsylvania in harsh decision MOREadministration to rejoin the Covenant once he has been consecrated.
“I strongly believe in that President TrumpDonald John Trump Trump campaign files for new recount in Georgia GOP senator congratulates Biden, says Trump must accept results FDA gives emergency approval for coronavirus antibody treatment given to Trump MOREThe decision to withdraw from the treaty is a violation of national law, “said a ranking member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. In the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act, Congress reaffirmed its support for the Open Skies Treaty and specific mandate for the administration. justify a withdrawal four months before a formal withdrawal notice took place. President Trump boldly ignored the law and unilaterally imposed a politically charged withdrawal, even after losing a presidential election. ”
Trump announced in early May that he would withdraw from the treaty with Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoTibetan Political Leader Visits White House for the First Time in Six Decades At least 8 Killed, 30 Wounded in Kabul Rocket Attack The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by UAE Embassy in Washington, DC – Pence MORE formally issue a notice of intent to withdraw from the pact one day later.
“While the United States, along with our allies and partners, states that are parties to the treaty, have lived up to our obligations and obligations under the treaty, Russia has openly and continuously violated the treaty in various ways for years,” Pompeo said. the time. “This is not an exclusive story that only applies to the Open Skies Treaty, unfortunately, because Russia has been a serious breach of many of its arms control obligations and obligations.”
In June, Democrats in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee questioned the legality of the Trump administration’s desire to withdraw from the pact.
“The timing of your decision – less than five months before an election – is also suspicious. “Starting the US withdrawal from the Open Skies Treaty without complying with US national law or constitutional practice is an obvious political maneuver in an attempt to bind a future administration,” senators wrote in a letter to Pompeo and former defense minister. Mark EsperMark Esper The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by UAE Embassy in Washington, DC – Trump, Biden clashes over transition teams, plans for pandemic President is wild card as fears of shutdown grow Trump seeks to end goals in recent days MORE. As such, we demand that you immediately suspend your efforts to initiate the withdrawal process until Congress receives the necessary notice under [National Defense Authorization Act], and the Senate has had the opportunity to weigh the withdrawal. ”
During his first term in office, Trump and his allies have boasted that they have been tougher on Russia in recent years than any previous government, despite allegations of an inappropriately friendly relationship between the president and his Russian counterpart.
In August, the Trump administration withdrew from the treaty on interwar forces with Russia, an agreement banning nuclear and conventional ballet and cruise missiles on the ground at intervals between 500 and 5,500 kilometers, signed in 1987.
At the time, the administration accused Russia of violating the terms of the treaty after saying U.S. officials had “tried everything since May 2013” to prevent Russia from building its nuclear power.
Rebecca Kheel contributed to this report, which was updated at. 12.08