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Moscow tests ICBM

MOSCOW, May 24 (UPI) -- The Kremlin announced it tested a prototype ballistic missile it says would strengthen the country's strategic missile defense system.

Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Vadim Koval said a prototype intercontinental ballistic missile was deployed from a mobile launch site from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome.

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"The new intercontinental ballistic missile is intended to strengthen the capabilities of Russia's strategic missile forces, including its capabilities for overcoming anti-missile defenses," he was quoted by Russia's state-run news agency RIA Novosti as saying.

Washington and its allies say a missile defense shield in Europe would counter regional aggression for adversaries such as Iran.

NATO leaders, during an annual summit in Chicago this week, issued a proclamation stating that the "appropriate mix of nuclear, conventional and missile defense capabilities" was vital for the security of the alliance.

Russia, however, said it viewed the plans as a threat to its national security, warning it may take corresponding action along its western border.

The Russian military later said it switched on a new long-range missile early warning radar in the Irkutsk region of Siberia.

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