Russia relaxed about its security despite missile defense odds with NATO - Lavrov

RIA Novosti

23:11 09/10/2011

MOSCOW, October 9 (RIA Novosti) - Russia has its own defense projects that leave the country relaxed about its security despite the controversy with NATO over the European missile defense shield, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Sunday.

In an interview with Russia’s Profil political weekly Lavrov said that Russia had enough defense projects that “allow not to worry about our security under any circumstances” and do not need “additional serious expenses.”

The minister however did not elaborate on the projects.

“Some of our Western partners ask: "Why do you threaten…to engage the world in the arms race?" It’s an ambiguous approach, because it’s the U.S.-designed missile defense scheme that implies an arms race,” Lavrov said, referring to the NATO’s reluctance to provide legally binding guarantees that its missiles would not be directed against Russia.

Russia and NATO agreed to cooperate on European missile defense system at the Lisbon Summit in November 2010. President Dmitry Medvedev proposed a joint system with full-scale interoperability to ensure that NATO's system will not be directed against Moscow. The alliance, however, favors two independent systems which exchange information.

Last week Moscow warned it may stop cooperation with Washington on a missile shield in Europe after the United States and Spain announced an agreement to deploy a number of U.S. Navy cruisers in Spain as part of the nascent missile defense program.

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