April 03, 2014 11:04
Ryabkov on U.S. plans to suspend missile defense cooperation with Russia: such cooperation does not exist (Part 2)
MOSCOW. April 3 (Interfax) - Russia and the United States do not cooperate in missile defense issues because Washington refuses to provide Moscow with legally-binding guarantees that the U.S.-planned global missile defense shield will not be directed against Russia, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said.
"I need to say that cooperation does not exist in this sphere," Ryabkov told Interfax on Thursday, when commenting on U.S. officials' statements that such cooperation with Russia could be suspended.
"The American side is well aware of the fact that opportunities for such cooperation could emerge if Washington agreed to heed our demand to provide reliable and legally-binding guarantees that the global missile defense system being built by the U.S. together with its NATO allies and certain countries in the Asian region and the Middle East will not be directed against [Russia]," he said.
"Obviously, this way of putting this question is no longer relevant today because of the U.S. policy aimed at exacerbating bilateral relations with Russia," Ryabkov said.
"Possibly, as time goes by, the American side will realize the absence of any alternative to such an approach, if certainly Washington's policy is not totally dominated by the aspiration to secure the appearance of potential in the missile defense sphere that would start to devalue our strategic nuclear deterrence potential," the high-ranking diplomat said.
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