The new Romanian missile interceptor goes live Thursday, with a main objective of protecting the Eastern Europe from long-range missiles coming from the Middle East, especially those from Iran.
But Mikhail Ulyanov, from Russia’s foreign ministry department, was quick to lambast NATO’s recent activity in the region saying it undermines Russia’s strategic stability. High-ranking officials from Russia also called the recent facility as a threat to security in the region and violates some international treaties.
Ulyanov was referring to 1987 INF treaty to which Russia and the United States were signatories. In the treaty, possession, production, and flight-test of ground-launched cruise missiles are prohibited. The ballistic missile interceptor has been planned by then U.S President George Bush in 2007.
In a report from RT, Ulyanov said the missile interceptor base is directly aimed at neutralizing Russia’s offensive capabilities. Ulyanov is also skeptical on the true intention of the facility, especially since it could be used in offensive cruise missiles.
In a report from RIA news agency, William Stephens, spokesperson for the US Embassy in Moscow, called the recent statement from Russia as “unacceptable and irresponsible.”
Stephens said the missile interceptor base is not intended against Russia nor to its military bases. Stephen added that in a standpoint of geography and physics, there’s no way the base could intercept intercontinental missiles from its current location.
In response to Russia’s opposition to the missile interceptor base in Romania, Carmen Romero, deputy spokesperson for NATO said the threat from ballistic missile is continuously growing, and as such, should never be ignored.
“More and more countries are trying to develop or acquire ballistic missiles. Moreover, missile technology is becoming more sophisticated, lethal and accurate, and increasing in range. For us to discount or ignore that very real missile threat would be irresponsible,” Romero was quoted as saying by the ABC News.