President Vladimir Putin has said Russia will follow in the footsteps of the United States and abandon a centrepiece nuclear arms treaty.
However, Mr Putin said Moscow will only deploy intermediate-range nuclear missiles if Washington does so.
He was speaking after the US announced on Friday that it was pulling the plug on the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty over alleged Russian violations.
Moscow has denied any breaches and accused Washington of making false accusations in order to justify its withdrawal.
Following the US notice of withdrawal from the treaty in six months, Mr Putin said that Russia will do the same.
He ordered the development of new land-based intermediate-range weapons, but emphasised that Russia will not deploy them in the European part of the country or elsewhere unless the US does so.
The collapse of the treaty has raised fears of a repeat of a Cold War showdown in the 1980s, when the US and the Soviet Union both deployed intermediate-range missiles on the continent.
Such weapons were seen as particularly destabilising as they only take a few minutes to reach their targets, leaving no time for decision-makers and raising the likelihood of a global nuclear conflict over a false launch warning.
“We will respond quid pro quo,” Mr Putin said. “Our American partners have announced they were suspending their participation in the treaty and we will do the same. They have announced they will conduct research and development, and we will act accordingly.”
The US has accused Russia of developing and deploying a ground-based cruise missile that violates provisions of the pact that ban production, testing and deployment of land-based cruise and ballistic missiles with a range of 500 to 5,500 kilometres.
Russia’s foreign minister said the US withdrawal from the pivotal pact has further upset strategic stability.
Sergey Lavrov was speaking during a meeting with President Putin.
Mr Lavrov said that Washington has ignored Russia’s offer to inspect a cruise missile that the US claimed violated the pact.
He claimed that the US itself had violated the treaty by deploying missile interceptors in Romania that use the launchers that could hold land-based cruise missiles.
The Russian minister said that another centrepiece nuclear arms pact, the New Start, which is set to expire in 2021, is also in trouble.