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MOSCOW, October 20 (Itar-Tass) — The United States gave right two signals for Russia that Washington is ready to make concessions to Moscow in the missile defence problem, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta writes. Director of the Missile Defence Agency Lieutenant General Patrick O’Reilly and Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Ellen Tauscher gave these signals.
Director of the Missile Defence Agency Patrick O’Reilly offered at the Atlantic Council that Russian military can make sure that the deployment of this missile defence system in Europe poses no threat for Russia, Reuters reported. He stated that the information about interceptor missiles involved in the missile defence system can be obtained by Russian radars.
Then Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Ellen Tauscher stated on the arms control cooperation at the same seminar in the Atlantic Council. She stated that Washington is seeking to persuade Russia that the missile defence system does not threaten the country’s strategic potential. Meanwhile, she added that the US is not ready to sign legally binding documents and does not agree on any restrictions in a missile defence system being deployed.
As for the technology development the missile defence system cannot deter the Russian strategic potential that concerns phases 3 and 4 and phases 1 and 2.
As for the first and second phases in the deployment of the missile defence system in Europe Russian experts do not have major disagreements, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta noted. They agreed that the Aegis missile defence system with interceptor missiles SM-3, on which the European missile shield is based, will be able to intercept medium and shorter-range missiles that Russia lacks. The US can get close to such level of combat capability, which will pose a threat to Russian strategic nuclear deterrence forces deployed in the European part of the country rather than Iranian missiles in further development of this missile defence system with upgraded missiles SM-3 block B or C at the third and fourth phases. It will be so particularly after the US dispatches its warships armed with the missile defence system Aegis to northern seas, actually to the coast of Norway, which is a US ally in NATO.
This is the reason why many Russian politicians and experts, as well as the authorities, are not enthusiastic, to put it mildly, over the US statements over the European missile shield not targeted against Russia, and why they demand Washington should give legal guarantees that substantiate these statements.
Moscow’s tough position is explained by the fact that it is very important for US President Barack Obama to show some serious foreign political achievements before the presidential elections in 2012, particularly over the problem of the war in Libya. It is very important for him to break deadlock in the negotiations over this problem. Obama intends to arrive in Moscow before the end of this year and to sign a document to this effect.
The proposals, which O’Reilly and Tauscher had voiced, are not quite inspiring, military experts said. Russia controls the SM-3 test launches without US permission all the same, they said. Russian Permanent Representative in NATO Dmitry Rogozin added that the US should agree on the special telemetric equipment, which Russia uses for the control over the ABM test launches.
Rogozin believes that those proposals, which are voiced in the US, actually boil down to a simple statement, “We are offered to dispatch our specialists to ‘a trawler’ in the ocean for the visual monitoring of the missile trajectory and whether or not it hits the target.” “We are not the tourists to go to the planetarium,” the permanent representative said. Russian specialists made the same statements over Tauscher’s speech. Written statements without legal guarantees are made only on the paper.