Russian diplomat: U.S. can use MDS as pretext to attack Iran
Russia's Permanent Representative to NATO, Dmitry Rogozin, does assess that the U.S. European missile defense system (MDS) project could be used as an excuse for an attack on Iran, RIA Novosti reported.
"The MDS is not a pure defensive system. Authoritative experts in Russia and in other countries worry that the creation of the European MDS, officially assigned to block threats from Iran, may in fact be a pretext for preparing an attack on Iran", Rogozin said on Thursday in Ankara, where he held talks with the Turkish leadership on the MDS issue.
Today the United States is carrying out its plans regarding the MDS, despite negotiations with Russia and its European partners, he said.
"American colleagues justify their missile defense plans by demonizing the Iranian missile program. We disagree on the details of the Iranian leadership's intentions in this area; on the steps for creating a missile in Iran and the possibility of these weapons. Iran, in essence, is our neighbor as a neighbor of Turkey, and we do not believe that calling it the "bad guy" will help resolve many issues in the Euro-Atlantic space", Rogozin added.
He said "it is clear that deployment of the MDS against virtual and non-existing weapons and threats can lead to a tense atmosphere."
Rogozin said Russia maintains permanent contacts with the Iranian leadership, including on questions of missile defense. "Theretofore, Russia is involved in supporting a peaceful nuclear program in Iran. Thus, we do know that Iran does not have weapons that could pose a threat, even against us", he stressed.