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Germany Fears US Anti-Missile Shield Could Fuel 'New Arms Race'
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by Staff Writers
Berlin (AFP) March 17, 2007
Germany's foreign minister said Saturday that the project to create a U.S. anti-missile shield could lead to a new arms race in Europe. Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier made the comments in an editorial to be published Sunday in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung newspaper. "Our biggest priority remains disarmament, and not re-armament," he said. "We do not want a new arms race in Europe." He called on the Russian and U.S. governments to avoid the "old reflexes" of the Cold War, and said Europe and NATO should remain united in the debate on the anti-missile shield.

Steinmeir said discussions on the anti-missile project would "put (U.S.) willingness for sincere cooperation to the test."

A U.S. project to install 10 interceptor missiles in Poland and a radar in the Czech Republic has been harshly criticised by Russia. Russian Foreign Minister Serguei Lavrov said Saturday that the project would have "negative repercussions" on relations between Russia and NATO.

Some aspects of the anti-missile system are already in place in Britain and Greenland.

Source: Agence France-Presse

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