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Ukrainian Ex-Minister Anxious Over Missile Defense Move

Borys Tarasyuk was foreign minister in 1998-2000 and again in 2005-07.
KYIV -- Former Ukrainian Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk has expressed the hope that the new U.S. policy that cancels previous agreements with Poland and the Czech Republic on basing missiles and a radar system in their countries will not be made at the expense of Poles, Czechs, and Ukrainians.

Tarasyuk, the chairman of Ukraine's parliamentary committee on European integration, was talking to RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service following news reports of the decision but ahead of President Barack Obama's pledge on September 17 that the aim was "smarter, stronger, swifter" defense of the United States and its European allies.

Tarasyuk added that he expects Washington to strongly support the further expansion of NATO.

Kyiv has lobbied hard for an invitation to join the trans-Atlantic alliance.

Tarasyuk urged the U.S. to provide NATO allies with detailed explanations for its decision on the defense shield so that it does not look like the White House is surrendering its positions to Russia.