Australia mulls joining U.S.-Japan missile shield
TOKYO, June 5 (RIA Novosti) - Australia is looking into the possibility of joining a U.S.-Japanese missile defense system, the country's defense minister said Tuesday.
Brendan Nelson said after a meeting with his Japanese counterpart, Fumio Kyuma, that Australia supports the joint U.S.-Japanese missile defense plan as a defensive measure against such states as North Korea.
He said North Korea's long-range ballistic missiles pose a threat to Australia, as well as to Japan, South Korea and China.
The U.S. has elements of its missile defense system deployed in Alaska and California, and a radar in the United Kingdom, and announced controversial plans in January to deploy interceptor missiles in Poland, and a missile defense radar in the Czech Republic.
Russia has dismissed Washington's claim that the missile shield in Europe is aimed at countering possible threats from "rogue states" such as Iran and North Korea.
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