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Tbilisi 'interested' in U.S. missile defense radar

RIA Novosti

13:27 07/02/2011

TBILISI, February 7 (RIA Novosti) - Georgia is interested in the proposal by a group of U.S. senators that Tbilisi host a missile defense radar, Deputy Foreign Minister David Dzhalagania said on Monday.

Four U.S. Republican senators - Jon Kyl, James Risch, Mark Kirk and James Inhofe - have sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Robert Gates asking him to consider Georgia as a potential host for the TPY-2 missile defense radar.

"This is a new initiative so I can't say the Georgian side has formulated a concrete position on the matter," Dzhalagania said.

"This initiative is interesting in and of itself and it deserves attention from the point of view of regional security and stability."

The United States previously invited Turkey to host a radar site but Ankara set a number of conditions, including that an anti-missile shield should be deployed in all the alliance's member states, not just Turkey.

The senators have suggested that alternate sites be considered and that Georgia's geographic location would make it an ideal place for a radar targeting Iran.

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