MINSK, September 10. /TASS/. Russia supports the initiative of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko on non-placement of intermediate- and shorter-range missiles in Europe, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev told reporters on Tuesday on the outcomes of the meeting with the Belarusian leader.
"We are in favor of that," he replied to a corresponding question. According to Patrushev, Russia does not plan "to do anything first, however, it will react to the threats and challenges that come up." He informed that during the meeting, he and Lukashenko discussed issues of international and regional security. "We have discussed the issues of strategic stability, the changes that happen to international and regional security, the way they should be kept in mind, the new challenges and threats that they imply, the ways to react to the actions of our partners," Patrushev said.
He recalled that the US had exited the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty back in 2002, and now it exited the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. "Its [the US] statements regarding placement of missiles in the East see China as an adversary, first and foremost," Patrushev said. "Of course, it concerns Russia, because the missiles that will be placed can reach our territory, and we have to keep that in mind."
According to Patrushev, during the meeting with the Belarusian leader, they discussed the way the situation affects European security.
"Missile defense systems have been deployed in Romania; soon, they will be placed in Poland. These are the claims we have made against the USA regarding its breach of the treaty," Patrushev stated.
He also noted that they hashed over the issues of counterterrorism, recalling that on September 3-4, the International High-level Conference on Countering Terrorism through Innovative Approaches and the Use of New and Emerging Technologies was held in Minsk. "The Belarusian president has made important statements, we express our solidarity. We need to unite our efforts in the fight against this threat. It is important to ensure that no country should back terrorist states and use these [terrorist] organizations to their advantage," Patrushev said.
On September 3, during a conference in Minsk, Lukashenko stressed the need to counter placement of intermediate- and shorter-range missiles in the European region.