US missile systems can lead to nuclear attack: Top Russian commander
Iran Press TV
Tue Mar 28, 2017 3:59PM
The Russian general staff has warned of the ramifications of the US stationing of anti-ballistic missile (ABM) systems in Europe and on warships patrolling Russia's borders, saying the deployments create the potential for America to launch a nuclear attack on Russia.
"The presence of American ABM sites in Europe and ABM-capable ships in the seas and oceans close to Russia's territory creates a powerful clandestine potential for delivering a surprise nuclear missile strike against Russia," Viktor Poznikhir, the deputy head of operations of the Russian general staff, said at a disarmament conference in Geneva.
The top Russian commander warned that the US' global missile system provokes a new arms race, noting that the system, which is deployed at sites in Alaska, Romania, and Poland, compromises Russia's nuclear deterrence capabilities.
The US has also deployed its THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) missile system in South Korea, in an alleged bid to shoot down North Korea's short, medium and intermediate range ballistic missiles.
Based on Moscow's estimations, the US will have as many as 1,000 interceptor missiles at its disposal by 2020, posing a real threat to Russia's missile capacity.
"The presence of the global ABM system lowers the threshold for the use of nuclear weapons, because it gives the US the illusion of impunity for using strategic offensive weapons from under the protection of the ABM 'umbrella,'" Poznikhir said.
"The ABM shield is a symbol of the build-up of rocket forces in the world and a trigger for a new arms race," he added.
The US continues the development of the system under a pretext of countering alleged threats from North Korea and Iran, while Washington is in fact undermining the global security through its attempts to get an advantage over Russia and China, Poznikhir pointed out.
The Russian commander warned that the continued deployment of the ABM systems "narrows down the opportunity for nuclear reduction dialogue."
Poznikhir pointed to US naval patrols in the Black Sea as a potential threat to Russia's security, as the type of missiles carried by the warships are unclear.
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