FLASHBACK 2017 - Russia Destroys Chemical Weapons, and Faults U.S. for Not Doing So | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

FLASHBACK 2017 - Russia Destroys Chemical Weapons, and Faults U.S. for Not Doing So

President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia presided over the destruction of his country’s last declared chemical weapons on Wednesday, describing the elimination as a “historic event” and complaining that the United States has failed to purge its own chemical arsenal.

The carefully choreographed event, broadcast on state television, cast Mr. Putin as a peacemaker and determined defender of international law. It seemed designed to offset the reputation he has acquired for belligerence and the flouting of international norms amid Russia’s military interventions in Ukraine in 2014 and in Syria.

As has become customary at public appearances by the Russian president, Mr. Putin used the occasion to take a dig at Washington. He suggested that it was playing a devious double game by pushing back the American goal of eliminating its chemical arms, which is not scheduled to happen for six years.

The United States, he said, “is unfortunately not observing the deadline for destroying chemical weapons” based on treaty obligations. “They have pushed the date back three times, citing lack of budget funding. Frankly, this sounds strange, but whatever.”

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