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17 Sep, 2009 16:19

Shelving of anti-missile shield is “common sense”

With the US shelving its plans for an anti-missile shield in Eastern Europe, Yury Rogulyov, head of Moscow State University’s Franklin Roosevelt Foundation, discusses the prospects for further bilateral cooperation.

According to Rogulyov, any negotiations between Russia and the US would inevitably have focused on the proposed anti-missile shield, which Russia opposed from the very beginning.

“Right now we can speak about the possibility of real cooperation between the two countries, which is very important,” Rogulyov said.

Rogulyov insists that there is much more in this deal than just relations between Moscow and Washington. Recalling that the Czech Republic was already opposed to the deployment of the parts of the strategic system, Rogulyov believes the situation is “not very easy” for the US.

“On the other hand, we know that right now both Russia and the United States are in the process of trying to fight the economic and financial crisis, which is very costly, and any other programs of such a sort would be a very high burden, even for the American economy,” he added.

Rogulyov is sure that the recent developments concern more than just Russia and the US. “There is much more interest involved in this decision making,” he stated. By shelving the anti-missile shield project, he said, “the USA will be able to involve much more countries into negotiations over the Iranian problem.”