Russia to act to counter threat from new US missile: Putin
Tehran (KNA) - Russian President Vladimir Putin says Moscow will take action to counter the threat from a ground-based cruise missile recently tested by the United States.
“I am concerned that the recently tested missile can be fired from launching sites located in Romania and soon [it is] planned to be installed in Poland. It only requires a change in software,” President Putin said during a visit to Helsinki, Finland, on Wednesday.
Thus, he said, it poses a “danger” to Russia’s security, and Moscow will take “countermeasures,” including the development of its own ground-launched short- and mid-range missiles.
However, Putin said, Russia will not be the first to deploy such weapons, including close to Europe, unless the US does so first.
He said the testing of the missile so quickly after America scrapped a bilateral arms control treaty with Russia showed that the US had been planning its exit for some time, implying that Washington’s claim that Moscow had first violated the treaty was insincere.
“The Americans tested this missile too quickly — way too quickly after having announced [they] are leaving” the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty, the Russian president said. “Given that, we have all reasons to believe that development to make it a ground-launched missile — it’s [originally] a maritime-based projectile — started long before [the US started] to look for reasons to leave the deal.”