US Considering Azeri Radar for Missile Defense Shield

BAKU (Combined Sources)–The United States is again considering a proposal by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to use a radar facility in Azerbaijan as part of its plans to develop a missile defense shield for Europe, Russian media reported Saturday.

 

US Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg held talks on the issue days after a meeting between Putin and US President Barack Obama, the Interfax news agency reported.

 

Putin had proposed to Obama’s predecessor George W Bush to jointly use the facility in Gabala, Azerbaijan.

 

Although the US is prepared to consider Gabala, it rejects giving up on the radar system it plans to set up in the Czech Republic and the anti-missile battery in Poland in return for the Russia offer.

 

Speaking in Baku, Steinberg said that Obama on Tuesday had a wide-ranging discussion with Putin about possible cooperation in the area of missile defense.

 

The US is interested in investigating the potential of Gabala, Steinberg said.

 

While the United States is looking at the Russian offer as an addition, Moscow is looking at Gabala as a complete alternative to the US plans in the Czech Republic and Poland.

 

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