Statement by Assistant to the President for Press Relations Fitzwater on the Soviet-United States Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty

 

January 25, 1988

 

The President today transmitted the INF treaty to the Senate for its advice and consent to ratification. The treaty, together with its Memorandum of Understanding on Data and Protocols on Elimination and Inspection, was signed on December 8, 1987, by the President and General Secretary Gorbachev.

 

The INF treaty, when fully implemented, will substantially increase the security of the United States and our European and Asian friends and allies. By eliminating all Soviet ground-launched INF missile systems, a substantial element of the Soviet military threat and an instrument for political pressure and intimidation will have been removed.

 

The INF treaty, with its asymmetric reductions favoring the United States, provides the first necessary step toward a more secure and stable balance of military forces between the United States and the Soviet Union, which will benefit all mankind. The treaty demonstrates the rewards of negotiating from a position of strength and with the firm support of our allies.