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United States unfolding missile defense in Europe de facto - Rogozin

RIA Novosti

07:57 06/05/2011

BRUSSELS, May 6 (RIA Novosti) - The United States is already deploying its missile defense system in Europe without waiting for an agreement with Russia, Russia's envoy to NATO Dmitry Rogozin said.

Romania announced on Tuesday that it had reached an agreement with the United States to deploy a U.S. missile interceptor system at a disused Soviet airbase on its territory. Moscow then issued an urgent request for legal guarantees from the United States that its missile shield will not target Russia's strategic nuclear forces.

"We have seen once again that the United States plans to unfold its system de facto without waiting for the end of [missile defense] talks with Russia, as the situation with the treaty with Romania shows," Rogozin told journalists after an ambassadorial-level NATO-Russia Council meeting on Thursday.

Rogozin said earlier on Thursday that Russia would cooperate with NATO only on a joint European missile defense network project, but will not be part of a U.S. missile defense in Europe.

Russia and NATO agreed to cooperate on the so-called European missile defense system at the Lisbon summit in November 2010. NATO insists there should be two independent systems that exchange information, while Russia favors a joint system with full-scale interoperability.

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