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NATO’s refusal to give missile defence guarantees exposes double standards

January 18, 2012, 21:45 UTC+3

There is no political ringing to this exercise

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BRUSSELS, January 18 (Itar-Tass) —— Complications in the Russia-NATIO dialogue on European missile defence are increasing, chief of the Russian Army General Staff, General of the Army Nikolai Makarov said.

“We are not heard. The deployment of the system continues. We are forced to respond,” Makarov said after a meeting of the Russia-NATO Council at the level of chiefs of the General Staffs on Wednesday, January 18.

“NATO’s approaches to missile defence have an essential difference from other aspects of European security, such as conventional or nuclear arms control. As far as missile defence is concerned, they are trying to convince us that legal guarantees are not needed, that we should believe that this system is not directed against Russia and cooperation should be developed. At the same time, as far as conventional arms control is concerned, we are told that Russia should assume legal obligations supported by additional inspections to monitor our troops. Isn’t this a demonstration of double standards?” Makarov said.

“On November 23, 2011, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev made a statement on measures of military-technical response to the anti-Russian capability of the European missile defence system. All measures stated by the Russian president have been calculated and will be implemented. A concrete timeframe for their implementation depends on the build-up of the anti-Russian capability of the European missile defence system,” the generals aid.

“As Dmitry Medvedev said in his statement, we are not rejecting further dialogue on missile defence and we are ready to discuss cooperation. This is why work was approved today to prepare a computer exercise on theatre missile defence,” the general said.

“The exercise will be conducted in order to obtain technical assessments of a possible missile defence system in Europe. Different options for interaction will be simulated, including elements of a sectoral approach we have proposed,” Makarov said.

“There is no political ringing to this exercise. This is a purely technical event that cannot eliminate the anti-Russian capability of the American missile defence system in Europe,” he said.

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