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Moscow receives fresh US missile shield proposals


US Under Secretary of State John Rood

MOSCOW (BNS): Moscow has received a fresh set of proposals from Washington over the planned European missile shield and replacing of Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START-1), a Foreign Ministry official said.


Russian official agency RIA Novosti quoted Igor Lyakin-Frolov, deputy head of the press and information department at the Russian Foreign Ministry as saying that they had received the US proposals on Friday and were currently studying them.

Earlier, on Thursday, the US Under Secretary of State John Rood said Washington had made a new offer to Moscow to try and ease opposition to the planned US missile shield in Central Europe and proposals on finding a replacement to the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START-1), which expires at the end of 2009.

Taking objections to President Dmitry Medvedev's remarks on deploying short-range Iskander missile systems in Kaliningrad, Rood said the remarks were unsatisfactory but that US-Russian dialogue on the issue would continue.

The US envoy said he would be meeting his Russian counterpart, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov in Moscow within a fortnight to discuss missile defence and other issues, including a new US proposal on START-1.

Talking about the new proposals, RIA Novosti said new confidence-building steps, in particular, would allow Russian monitors access to missile defence facilities in Poland and the Czech Republic.

However, Moscow has always opposed Washington's plans to place 10 interceptor missiles in Poland and accompanying radar in the Czech Republic, saying it threatened Russia's national security.

Addressing the lower house in Parliament, on Wednesday, President Medvedev said Russia would deploy short-range Iskander missile systems in its western enclave of Kaliningrad 'to neutralise if necessary the anti-ballistic missile system in Europe.'






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