Russia: Won’t install missiles if no U.S. shield

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has made clear Moscow won’t install Iskander missiles in Kaliningrad if the United States does not deploy a missile shield in central Europe, Russia’s deputy prime minister said.

The previous U.S. administration of George W. Bush sealed deals last year to deploy 10 interceptor missiles in Poland and a radar in the Czech Republic.


The Bush administration said the shield was aimed at protecting Europe from “rogue states,” but Moscow sees it as a threat.

In response, it said it would install a missile system in Russia’s western outpost Kaliningrad, but Ivanov signaled on Friday that Russia was ready to reconsider that if Washington changed its missile shield plans.

President Medvedev from the very start said very clearly and unequivocally that if there are no interceptors in Poland and the Czech Republic as was planned by the previous administration, clearly, there will be no Iskanders in Kaliningrad,” Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov told a security conference in Munich.

Ivanov said the U.S. missile shield was part of the United States’ strategic infrastructure and was aimed at deterring Russia’s nuclear missile potential.

“At the same time, we are eager to continue talks on that subject and hope it will yield some results,” he said.

Ivanov said Russia was open to a joint assessment of threats and if it was determined that they existed, to pursue a joint approach using Russian technology.

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