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15 May, 2008 21:20

Medvedev inspects missile base on first presidential trip

On his first visit as commander-in-chief of Russia's armed forces, President Dmitry Medvedev has visited the Ivanovo region to examine the base of a regiment equipped with the Topol-M mobile missile system.

Speaking during the trip, Medvedev said Russia must be prepared to invest in its missile defences.

“It’s obvious that our task for the near future, for the next few years, is to have the strategic missile troops receive all the necessary funding in order to correspond to the modern level of threat, in the situation that really exists on the planet today. For different reasons, both objective and subjective, development was extremely slow in the 1990s, but over the recent years some progress has become apparent and our task for today is not to slow down,” Medvedev said.

The Topol-M missile near the town of Teikovo in central Russia is one of the most recent inter-continental ballistic missiles produced by the country's military.

Medvedev, who is on his first trip across Russia since his inauguration, is also expected to visit the city of Kostroma.

Ivan Konovalov from the Centre for Analysis of Strategy and Technology says the Topol-M intercontinental missiles are the basis of Russia's nuclear shield.

“This is not the country's newest weapon, but definitely the most powerful,” Konovalov said.