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Russian Foreign Minister Criticizes U.S. Missile-Defense Plan

Sergei Lavrov (file photo) (NATO) April 11, 2007 (RFE/RL)  -- Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has offered new criticism of the U.S. plan to build a missile-defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic.

Lavrov writes in an article in Britain's "Financial Times" newspaper today that the U.S. plan would "fundamentally alter" Europe's geostrategic landscape. He says it is "unacceptable" for anyone to use the European continent as "their own strategic territory."

Lavrov says that Moscow believes that the planned missile shield is unnecessary because neither Europe nor the United States currently face any serious threat from missiles that could be fired by so-called rogue states.

Lavrov says Russia wants to hold three-way talks with the United States and European Union in a bid to resolve the question.

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