A top U.S. military official accused Russia of breaking its commitment to a decades-old arms treaty Wednesday by deploying a new land-based, nuclear-capable cruise missile in Europe. The remarks came days after the Russian military announced it was arming its nuclear submarine fleet with new supersonic cruise missiles to modernize its naval forces.

During a House Armed Services Committee hearing, Vice Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Air Force Gen. Paul Selva said Russia's SSC-8 cruise missile threatens Washington's allies in NATO and warned Moscow intentionally is using it to put pressure on its neighboring foes. He echoed sentiments raised last month by U.S. officials who called Russia's developing and testing of the weapon a violation of the "spirit and intent" of the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty signed by the U.S. and the Soviet Union to eliminate such short- and intermediate-range missiles. Selva said the renewed missile activity could threaten regional stability at an already tense period in relations between NATO and Russia.

"The system itself presents a risk to most of our facilities in Europe and we believe that the Russians have deliberately deployed it in order to pose a threat to NATO and to facilities within the NATO area of responsibility," Selva said, without mentioning whether the missile was armed with a nuclear warhead or not, Reuters reported.

The news came two days after Russian Deputy Defense Minister Yori Borisov announced Monday that Moscow's navy would be equipping its Project 949A Oscar II-class nuclear-powered guided missile submarines with 3M-54 Kalibr cruise missiles, the Diplomat reported. The move was reportedly part of a greater effort to update the country's naval capabilities, something Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu pledged to do last month.

Both NATO and Russia have undergone massive military escalations in recent months with each side accusing the other of provocation. Since Moscow annexed the Ukrainian territory of Crimea in 2014, Russia's European neighbors increasingly have become concerned about their national sovereignty and have looked toward the U.S. to bolster NATO's military forces, which it did under former President Barack Obama. Since taking office in January, President Donald Trump has expressed less enthusiastic views toward the U.S. commitment to NATO as well as the 2010 New START agreement through which Russia and the U.S. agreed to limit their nuclear weapon arsenals.