FM Melescanu reacts to Russia’s request that the US should destroy system in Deveselu. Ambassador Kuzmin says Moscow has no aggressive intentions on Romania


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Romanian Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu said the anti-missile base in Deveselu is purely defensive and would not create problems to Russia, reports.

The reaction comes as Russia’s Defence Ministry said that the United States should destroy the MK-41 anti-missile system in Deveselu, Romania, as well as its strike drones, in order to again follow the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), Reuters informed.

Moscow has vowed last weekend to restart the development of medium-range nuclear missiles as it mirrors Washington’s decision to withdraw from the 1987 arms control agreement. The split has the potential to incite a new arms race.

Russia will withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, President Vladimir Putin said on Saturday, a day after the United States announced a similar move, reportsed.

The decision follows nearly a decade of Washington and Moscow accusing each other of violations of the Reagan-Gorbachev-era arms control treaty.

The White House said in a statement on Friday that the US withdrawal “will be completed in 6 months unless Russia comes back into compliance by destroying all of its violating missiles, launchers, and associated equipment.”

Ambassador Valery Kuzmin: Russia has no aggressive intentions regarding Romania

Russian Ambassador in Bucharest, Valery Kuzmin, said on Thursday, during a press conference, the Russian Federation has no aggressive intentions regarding Romania and that Moscow is ready to negotiate with the US, but his country does not want to initiate the dialogue.

“The Americans said for a decade, if not longer, that their anti-missile system is not targeted on Russia, but recently it was proven that it is exactly aimed on Russia. We’ve learned history and we are not naïve. We have no hostile, unfriendly actions planned, and I can assure you Russia has no hostile intentions towards Romania. We believe it is our neighbor country and the best way to build relations with the neighbors is to offer good neighborhood conditions,” Ambassador Kuzmin said.

The Russian envoy added that his country is ready to carry out dialogue with the US on the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, however it will not be the one to initiate the talks.

“We haven’t discussed with the Americans, not because we are not ready to discuss, but we see no reaction. We are looking for dialogue, but we are not going to initiate the dialogue. We’ve heard only charges, ultimatums and any attempts to have substantial discussions, to offer information, have been ignored. It will depend very much on the realism of our leaders,” the Russian Ambassador said.

In October 2018, Russian Ambassador Valery Kuzmin said in an interview occasioned by the celebration of 140 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations between Russia and Romania, that the bilateral diplomatic relations ‘could be much better’ and argued that Moscow is trying to push ahead the deadlocked diplomacy.

Ambassador Kuzmin also claims that Romania has become “provider of insecurity and destabilization in the region, due to the missiles in Deveselu.”

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