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MOSCOW, February 18 (Itar-Tass) – Russia will press consistently for legal guarantees that the U.S. missile defence system in Europe is not aimed against it, according to Russia’s new foreign policy concept posted on the Foreign Ministry’s official website on Monday, February 18.
Moscow consistently advocates “constructive cooperation with the United States in the field of arms control, including in the light of indivisible interconnection between strategic offensive defensive weapons, imperative need to lend a multilateral nature to the disarmament process, and believes that negotiations on further reduction of strategic offensive weapons can be possible only if all factors that affect global strategic stability are taken into account, without exception,” the concept said.
“In connection with the creation of a U.S. global missile defence system, Russia will consistently press for legal guarantees that it is not directed against Russia’s nuclear deterrence capabilities,” the document said.
The U.S. missile defence plans in Europe are “discussable”, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said after talks with NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen earlier in the day.
“We drew the attention of our NATO partners to the fact that the U.S. plan to deploy missile defence in Europe is discussable,” he said.
“Our NATO colleagues assured us all the time that there is a U.S. plan and there can be deviations from it. However now we can see that in the United States their equivalent of our Audit Chamber is questioning the effectiveness of the missile defence configuration in Europe. In other words, there are doubts concerning not security threats to Russia but from the opposite. We drew the attention of our NATO partners to the fact that this plan is not the ultimate truth,” the minister said.
Lavrov noted that as far as the issue of missile defence is concerned, which remains the main problem in relations between Russia and NATO, “the dialogue between Russia and the U.S., which we are ready to actively continue, plays the leading role.”