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Russia insists legally guarantees from U.S. and NATO on missile defense shield

09-14-2011 10:39 BJT

MOSCOW, Sept. 13 (Xinhua) -- The Russian Foreign Ministry on Tuesday reiterated that Moscow wants legally guarantees from the United States and NATO that the U.S.-led European missile defense shield is not targeting Russia.

In a statement posed on official website, the foreign ministry made its comments on the agreement between Romania and the United States on the deployment of the land-based SM-3 ballistic missile defense system and the forthcoming deployment in Turkey of the U.S. AN/TPY-2 radar.

"This is happening against the backdrop of the absence of progress in the Russia-NATO and Russia-U.S. dialogues on the topic of the missile shield," the ministry said.

It added that the developments make it even more important to receive "firm and legally binding guarantees from the U.S. and NATO" that the missile defenses deployed in Europe "will not be aimed against Russia's strategic nuclear forces."

Earlier on Tuesday, the United States and Romania signed a ballistic missile defense agreement that allows the deployment of SM-3 interceptors in the East European nation that target short and medium-range missiles.

Moscow has long opposed the deployment of NATO missile defense facilities near its borders, saying that they would be a security threat to the country and upset the strategic balance of force in Europe.

While the U.S. side stated the missile system is not directed against Russia, Moscow has not received a written assurance from the alliance yet.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: Xinhua

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