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Russia And Azerbaijan Confirm Readiness To Host US Anti-Missile System

The Gabala radar station
by Staff Writers
Moscow (AFP) June 20, 2007
The defence chiefs of Russia and Azerbaijan confirmed Wednesday their countries' readiness to host part of a US missile defence system at a Russian-leased radar station in Azerbaijan, Interfax news agency reported. Russian Defence Minister Anatoly Serdyukov said during talks with his Azeri counterpart Safar Abiyev that Russia is "ready for the joint use of the Gabala radar station either on a bilateral or trilateral basis," Russian defence ministry advisor Ilshat Baichurin was quoted as saying.

After the meeting, Abiyev said: "We confirmed Azerbaijan's readiness for the joint use by Russia and the United States of the radar station in Gabala and we signed the relevant protocol," Interfax reported.

The United States is examining the proposal, first made public by Russian President Vladimir Putin two weeks ago, as an alternative to plans for locating a powerful missile-tracking radar in the Czech Republic, as well interceptor missiles in Poland.

Russia opposes either location for the planned US system, but last week US Defence Secretary Robert Gates said that the Azerbaijan radar would only be able to complement a Czech site.

Russia leases the Gabala installation in Azerbaijan, a former Soviet base used to monitor US military movements around the Indian Ocean region.

Source: Agence France-Presse

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MDA Test Fires Kinetic Energy Interceptor Motor
Washington (UPI) June 19, 2007
MDA Director Lt. Gen. Henry A. "Trey" Obering said Friday the agency had successfully carried out the testing of the first-stage rocket motor of its new Kinetic Energy Interceptor, or KEI, a high-speed, three-stage interceptor system designed to destroy incoming ballistic missiles.

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