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Moscow notes unscrupulous US attempts to accuse Russia of dangerous missile defense plans

MOSCOW, August 1. /TASS/. Washington is making unscrupulous attempts to accuse Russia of aggressive and dangerous intentions in the missile defense domain, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Friday.

The Ministry said it had taken note of an article posted on the US Department of Defense’s website, which says that missile defense is allegedly becoming an element of great power competition.

"Citing an unnamed Pentagon official, the article claims that Russia and China are developing several increasingly sophisticated missile defence systems in the context of rivalry with the United States. As follows from the text, the US military sees this as a threat," the ministry said.

"We take this post as part of a targeted disinformation campaign seeking to discredit Russia. Clearly, there are unscrupulous attempts to ascribe to us some aggressive and dangerous plans, this time in missile defence. Unmistakably, this is about the United States trying to justify its own large-scale and expensive programmes for creating and modernising weapons and plans to build up its military presence around the world. ," the ministry said.

It added that Pentagon was using the great power rivalry rthetoric in an attempt to substantiate US measures aimed at gaining military superiority to the detriment of other states’ security.

The Russian Foreign Ministry also said the US military has been deploying its strategic missile defense infrastructure not only on its territory, but also around the world, which makes it a global system in nature.

"Washington is also thinking about developing the space segment of its missile defence system, in fact, planning to deploy attack weapons in outer space. In addition, in the context of missile defence at the doctrine level, the Pentagon has left open the possibility of delivering preventive ‘disarming’ strikes against other countries in order to destroy missiles before they are launched. Moreover, the United States claims these are defensive actions," the Russian Foreign Ministry went on.

It added that the actively expanding US missile defense architecture "is changing the strategic balance of forces in the sphere of offensive weapons, creates major additional global instability risks and contributes to forming dangerous conditions for stepping up a nuclear and space arms race."

According to Moscow, Russia has repeatedly expressed its concerns about the unilateral and unrestricted US effort to create a global missile defense system.

"After the United States scrapped the ABM Treaty, Russia has more than once come up with initiatives designed to remove any "annoyances" and to establish cooperation in the anti-missile sphere. Washington and its allies have refused to move in this direction and are reluctant to take Russia’s interests into account. So, the desire to shift onto us the responsibility for the situation created by the United States is at least unseemly," the ministry said.

"Once again, we urge Washington to take a responsible position and to take a critical look at its missile defence plans, which, if implemented, will not be beneficial for the security of either the United States or its allies," Russian diplomats said. "It would also be helpful to abandon these tactics of shifting responsibility to others, which is undignified behaviour for a great power, in order to divert the attention of Americans and the entire international community from their own actions of seeking to ratchet up tensions and break the international stability system."

"We are ready to discuss missile defence issues with the United States as part of a bilateral strategic dialogue," the ministry said.