Russia Could Drop START Treaty Due to New Air Defense Systems in Europe

CC BY 2.0 / US Missile Defense Agency / Aegis Ashore Missile Defence - Hawaii Complex
Aegis Ashore Missile Defence - Hawaii Complex - Sputnik International
Moscow could withdraw from the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty in response to new air defense systems being deployed in Eastern Europe, a senior Russian official said.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Russia could exit the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) in response to the deployment of new air defense systems in Eastern Europe, the head of Russia's Arms Committee in the upper house of parliament said Thursday.

“This is obviously an extreme measure and I hope this won’t go that far, but it’s no coincidence that the Russian Parliament in ratifying the new START included a clause that the deployment of air defense systems could be one of the reasons Russia leaves the agreement,” Viktor Ozerov said.

On Thursday, the US Aegis Ashore air defense system is to be officially deployed in Romania, and on Friday the construction of a similar complex is to begin in Poland.

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