Moscow to Study New US Missile Defense Proposals

MOSCOW, March 21 (RIA Novosti) – A senior Russian diplomat said on Thursday that the United States has provided new information on its missile defense program that Moscow will study in detail.

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said that although Moscow remains apprehensive over Washington’s missile shield strategy, it is heartened by the readiness to continue dialogue on the issue.

US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced last week that plans for the final stage of Central European-based missile shield are to be scrapped and that interceptors will instead be placed in Alaska.

The change is designed to counter potential incoming threats from North Korea, but Russia worries that any missile defense program undermines the integrity of its own military strategy.

Russian deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said on Wednesday that security officials from Russia and the United States will meet in the coming months to discuss the impact of recent developments.

Antonov said talks could be held at a security conference in Moscow due to take place on May 23-24.

Russia says it is pressing for “legally binding agreements guaranteeing that US missile defense elements are not aimed against Russia’s strategic nuclear forces.”


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