By RFE RL
(RFE/RL) — Russia has activated a radar warning system against incoming missiles in its exclave of Kaliningrad on the borders of the European Union, in response to Western plans to deploy a missile-defense shield in Europe.
The United States says the shield is needed to protect against potential threats from countries such as Iran, while Russia says it will weaken its nuclear deterrent.
President Dmitry Medvedev, announcing that the Voronezh-DM system was moving into immediate combat readiness, said Russia could no longer be satisfied with verbal promises.
“We can no longer be satisfied with simple statements that this gradual, adaptive deployment of a European missile-defense system is not aimed against Russia,” Medvedev said.
“These verbal statements, unfortunately, do not guarantee the defense of our interests.”
But he also said that the activation of the Kaliningrad station “does not close the door to dialogue” with the United States on missile defense.
Medvedev has previously warned that Russian missiles could be deployed on the EU’s borders if the missile shield is deployed.