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Russia warns of 'measures' against US missile shield

by Staff Writers
Moscow (AFP) Dec 24, 2007
Russia will retaliate against any deployment of a US missile shield in central Europe which would weaken Moscow's nuclear deterrent, the foreign ministry spokesman said Monday.

"This will be a strong action designed to weaken Russia's nuclear deterrent. We would have no other choice than to take measures of reprisal," spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said in a foreign ministry statement.

The warning comes a week after Russia's nuclear weapons chief reportedly threatened to target the planned US missile defence shield in Poland and the Czech Republic if Washington failed to listen to Moscow's concerns.

General Nikolai Solovtsov, head of strategic missile forces, said that such a decision could be taken if the US shield was seen to "undermine the Russian nuclear deterrent capability," the Interfax news agency reported

"I do not exclude... the missile defence shield sites in Poland and the Czech Republic being chosen as targets for some of our intercontinental ballistic missiles," Solovtsov said, according to Interfax.

Russian official says NATO plans very worrying: RIA Novosti
Russian official says NATO plans very worrying: RIA Novosti
Russia is "extremely" concerned by the development of NATO and opposes further expansion by the Western military alliance, Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko said Wednesday, state-run RIA Novosti news agency reported.

"We are extremely concerned over the direction in which the alliance will evolve," Grushko was quoted as saying. Grushko lashed out at NATO's steady expansion into former Moscow-dominated eastern Europe, saying the policy "was a leftover from the time of the Cold War and today is not able to resolve a single real security problem".

Instead, NATO's "open-doors policy" only "leads to a strengthening of antagonisms between different countries", Grushko said. NATO gave membership in 1999 to the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, then in 2004 brought in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Romania and Bulgaria.

Among other former communist countries seeking membership are Albania, Croatia, Macedonia.

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Nuclear India moves closer to missile defence shield
New Delhi (AFP) Dec 21, 2007
India announced Friday a final successful test of the surface-to-air Akash missile before starting mass production under an ambitious plan to build a national missile defence shield.

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