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Russia Wants Missile-Defense Legal Guarantees

September 27, 2011

Russia's foreign minister has reiterated concerns over U.S. missile-defense plans in Europe, saying his country needs "solid legal guarantees" the deployments won't upset the strategic and regional nuclear balance.

"It is not enough to make statements that the increase in global missile defense capabilities would not undermine the basics of strategic stability," Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told the United Nations General Assembly. "The issue is too serious. We need solid legal guarantees that that the potential of the missile defense shield will indeed be adequate and will not upset the global or regional balance."

He also said that the world community must support the resumption of diplomatic efforts to defuse tensions over the nuclear programs of Iran and North Korea.

U.S. plans to deploy missile defenses aimed at intercepting any attacks by Iran on U.S. allies in Europe or the Middle East have worried Russia.

The United States insists that the defense shield is not designed for use against Russia, but Lavrov says the Kremlin is not satisfied.

compiled from agency reports

Source: http://www.rferl.org/content/russia_wants_missile_defense_legal_guarantees/24341915.html

Copyright (c) 2011. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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