Moscow would like Washington to clarify its plans to station weapons in space, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told reporters on Thursday.
"The possibility that weapons will be deployed to space is just around the corner. We will seek not some assurances, but specific explanations," Ryabkov said in response to a TASS question. "This is one of elements of the entire picture, which affects the strategic stability situation," he added.
According to him, 20-30 years ago, "space was militarized from the standpoint of reconnaissance and communication activities, and the monitoring of the situation on the ground." "However, there were no real possibilities to deploy weapons there," he said, adding that "the situation is completely different now."
"When we see that US doctrines, including those concerning missile defenses, officially state that space missile defense systems will be created, particularly capable of carrying out strikes on nuclear deterrent forces, we arrive at a conclusion that strategic stability is under attack," the Russian deputy foreign minister pointed out.
"When we discuss strategic stability issues and doctrines with the United States, we will seek thorough explanations of what we should get ready for, and not just vague assurances," Ryabkov noted.
According to him, "it will one way or another turn into an arms race, which will be a financial burden for all." "There is much room for diplomatic work, provided the parties show political will. As of now, we can say that our American colleagues this kind of will," he said.
The senior Russian diplomat went on to say that his Prague meeting with US State Department's Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security Andrea Thompson had been focused on the situation surrounding New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty).
"We have a lot of questions to ask the US about its plans concerning the launch of a multi-lateral process aimed at creating conditions for nuclear disarmament," Ryabkov noted. "We voiced some of our concerns about the United States’ doctrines. We will continue to call on the US to respond to these concerns and the need to clarify its doctrines," he added.