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Russia Plans Totally Effective Response To US Missile Plan

Since the end of the Cold War Russia's huge nuclear arsenal has not been aimed specifically at European targets, although this is a largely a symbolic gesture since the target can be quickly changed.
by Staff Writers
Heiligendamm, Germany (AFP) Jun 06, 2007
Russia plans a "totally effective" response to any deployment of a US anti-missile system, but will not necessarily aim weapons at European cities, the Kremlin spokesman said Wednesday. "It will be totally effective from the point of view of ensuring our security," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters at the Group of Eight summit in Germany.

The targeting of Europe, referred to by President Vladimir Putin in an interview ahead of the G8, would only be "one of the possible means" to respond, he said via a conference telephone call.

Russia has been infuriated by a US plan to deploy an anti-missile system in Poland and the Czech Republic, two former Soviet bloc states.

Russia says it believes it is a target of the system while Washington insists the defence is to guard against an attack by unfriendly states such as North Korea or Iran.

Peskov said Moscow does not accept US assurances or offers to allow inspections of the proposed sites.

"The problem is we are talking about American weapons in eastern Europe," he said. "Inspection is not solving the problem."

Putin's comments, published Sunday, marked a dramatic escalation of rhetoric in the long-running US-Russian row.

Since the end of the Cold War Russia's huge nuclear arsenal has not been aimed specifically at European targets, although this is a largely a symbolic gesture since the target can be quickly changed.

Putin was asked whether the US deployment would mean a return to Cold War days when Soviet nuclear missiles were targeted at European cities.

Putin replied: "Of course. We, of course, will return to those times.

"If the US nuclear potential extends across the European territory, we will have to get new targets in Europe," Putin said.

According to Peskov, "this wasn't a kind of threatening statement on behalf of Mr Putin.

"He was just asked during an interview by a journalist whether he would be ready to consider hypothetically a possibility of retargeting. It was an idea of the journalist.

"Mr Putin confirmed, yes, it could be one of the possible means."

Source: Agence France-Presse

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Is The World In For A New Cold Age
Moscow (RIA Novosti) Jun 04, 2007
Today's strategic balance is an expression of the quantitative and qualitative alignment of forces with due account of the factors determining the strategic situation. Its parameters form a sophisticated dynamic system; nuclear, primarily strategic weapons are one of its elements.

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