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General Says Russian Missile Test A 'Response' To NATO Shield


Russia says it has successfully test-fired a new intercontinental ballistic missile in what a senior general has described as a "response" to the European missile-defense shield being erected by NATO.

Russia's military said the missile lifted off on May 23 from Plesetsk in northwestern Russia and reached its target in Russia's far eastern Kamchatka Peninsula.

Colonel-General Viktor Yesin was quoted as describing the missile launch as one of Moscow's "responses" to the joint regional missile shield being developed by NATO.

NATO declared at the weekend that the first stage of the U.S.-led shield was now operational.

NATO says the shield is intended to protect member nations from potential missile attacks by states like Iran.

Russia says it fears that the system could eventually threaten Moscow's own nuclear deterrent.

Based on reporting by dpa and AFP
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