Russia opposes U.S. missile defense plan

March 23, 2010 at 9:30 AM

MOSCOW, March 23 (UPI) -- U.S. missile defense plans for Europe are a sticking point in finalizing a new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, a Russian military commander said.

The treaty would replace a pact that expired in December.

"The treaty is some 95-percent ready, but we still have to resolve some issues, including getting the U.S. agreement to include the missile defense issues in the treaty," Gen. Nikolai Makarov told Rossiyskaya Gazeta in a story published Tuesday.

The previous treaty favored the United States and was not in the best interest of Russia, Makarov said. The new treaty must guard against an expansion of the U.S. missile defenses, which would "certainly target our nuclear capability," Makarov said.

The Obama administration last year scrapped plans to put interceptor missiles in Poland and radar in the Czech Republic.

U.S. plans to install interceptor missiles in the Black Sea region, however, still threaten Russia, RIA Novosti reported Tuesday.

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