US Says It Would Put Missile Defense Guarantee for Russia ‘In Writing’

Posted October 18th, 2011 at 7:40 pm (UTC-5)
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A senior U.S. official says the United States is prepared to “put it in writing” that a missile defense system for Europe will not target Russia.

Undersecretary of State for Arms Control Ellen Tauscher told a Washington forum Tuesday that the United States must continue its efforts to cooperate with Russia on missile defense.

She said this includes a chance to share more technical information with the Russians and show them what the system can and cannot do.

Moscow has objected to U.S. and NATO plans to build a land and sea-based missile defense system in Europe to counter possible threats from Iran and North Korea. The Kremlin says it would undermine Russian security and could set off a new arms race in Europe.

Tauscher said while the United States is willing to put the guarantee to Russia in writing, it will not sign any legally binding commitments that would limit missile defense.

Tauscher said it is important for defense to keep pace with the “evolution of the threat.”