Russia, U.S. Missile Defense Dispute

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday that the United States and Russia have the opportunity to cooperate on missile defense.

“We believe that Russia and the United States have the opportunity to do joint research and joint development. And even eventually assumingly we can reach such an agreement (on) joint deployment,” Clinton said in Brussels.

From The People’s Daily, China

Clinton’s remarks were the latest in years of argument between Russia and the United States on the latter’s ambition to deploy a missile defense shield in Eastern Europe.

Former U.S. President George W. Bush and his administration planned to deploy 10 missile interceptors in Poland and a radar system in the Czech Republic which it claimed to protect its European allies from missile threat by “rouge state.”

In 2002, the United States started negotiations with Poland on the missile shield issue, without making any significant progress due to their difference.

In January 2007, Washington resumed negotiations with Warsaw and Prague and finalized agreements with the two countries before Bush’s departure from the White House.

The U.S. plan has met strong opposition from Moscow, which insists that the missile shield, if deployed, will undermine Russia’s national security.

In November 2008, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev announced plans to deploy missiles in Kaliningrad, to counter the U.S. defense shield plan.

On March 3, 2009, Medvedev said that “We have to work together and create a common shield against all threats. The U.S. and Europe would negotiate on that, but it would have to be global and not fragmented around the Russian frontier.”

Barack Obama’s administration has already decided to review the effectiveness of the missile shield and its cost.

Source:Xinhua

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Above: Russia’s “power couple.” Vladimir Putin speaks with his presidential successor, Dmitry Medvedev.

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