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9 Feb, 2010 19:25

American missile defense – a threat to Russia?

Washington's revamped missile defense project is once again becoming a major concern for Russian security. Russian military officials say they view the plans to deploy missiles in Central Europe as a direct threat.

“The development of the missile defense system is targeting Russia,” said chief of the Russian Army General Staff Nikolay Makarov.

“Even though some state officials claim it's aimed at enhancing our security, this is far from being true. We view it very negatively because it might weaken our missile forces,” he added.

It comes as Romania approved a proposal to house elements of the American missile shield following Poland's agreement to host the US Patriot missile system.

The tension between Moscow and Washington is slowing progress on a new nuclear arms reduction deal which has been in negotiations for months.