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Russia hopes NATO summit clarifies European missile defense plan - envoy

RIA Novosti

17:31 18/10/2010

MOSCOW, October 18 (RIA Novosti) - Moscow hopes the Russian-NATO Council summit due to be held in November in Lisbon will make clear the situation with the European missile defense plan, Russia's envoy to the military alliance said on Monday.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen has repeatedly said that NATO wanted Russia to be part of a missile defenses plan for Europe, but Russia said a serious assessment of missile risks should be carried out before starting on the project.

A political decision (concerning the European missile shield project) should be made in Lisbon October 19-20, Dmitry Rogozin said during an interview with Ekho Moskvy radio station, adding that "at the moment we can localize existing threats ourselves."

Rasmussen proposed to create an anti-missile shield spreading from Vancouver to Russia's Far East city of Vladivostok. He said European missile shield project will a part of the non-proliferation concept.

U.S. plans to deploy an anti-ballistic missile shield in Eastern Europe remains a bone of contention between Moscow and NATO. The United States says it would defend NATO territories against a possible missile threat from Iran, but Russia says there is no threat.

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