Russia's Rogozin Seeks to Scare Bulgaria Away from US Missile Shield

Defense | May 27, 2011, Friday // 20:33|  views

Russian Ambassador to NATO Dmitry Rogozin (middle) during the Varna session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria may become a target of terrorists if it accepts on its territory elements from the US/NATO missile shield in Europe, according to Russian Ambassador to NATO Dmitry Rogozin.

Rogozin made his warning Friday in Bulgaria's Varna, which is hosting a session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.

His foreboding came amidst reports that Bulgaria is likely to host the radar of the future US/NATO missile defense system in Europe, to which Russia was invited to join at the NATO Lisbon summit in November 2010.

"As far as Bulgaria is concerned, you need to realize the responsibility stemming from taking a decision in favor of stationing elements from the missile shield on Bulgarian territory because such a facility will be a target. That is, if Bulgaria hosts such elements, it could be involved in a terrorist plan," Rogozin told journalists in Varna, as cited by Darik Radio.

He did point out, however, that Russia could live with the stationing of interceptor missiles from the US/NATO missile shield on Romanian territory. However, Russia would react strongly if such missile are stationed further north.

Russian Ambassador to NATO Rogozin is known, among other things, for styling Bulgaria "Russia's Trojan horse" in the EU and NATO in a 2008 interview. The warning that he has issued resembles the warnings made in 2005-2006 before Bulgaria agreed to host military facilities for joint use with the US Army.

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Tags: Dmitry Rogozin, NATO, USA, missile shield, missile defense, nato parliamentary assembly, Varna, Romania

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