NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen yesterday said Ukraine is open to taking part in establishing a European missile shield, RIA Novosti reported (see GSN, Nov. 24, 2010).
"This morning, Ukraine's foreign minister [Kostyantyn Hryshchenko] and I discussed our cooperation in building a missile defense system, and I have taken into consideration that Ukraine is interested in such cooperation," Rasmussen said following a meeting in Kiev.
Ukraine is not a member of the military alliance.
At the meeting, Ukrainian and NATO officials talked over the potential for holding a series of expert discussions that would consider ways Kiev could participate in the missile defense system planned for the continent.
Under a U.S.-proposed plan, sea- and land-based missile interceptors would be deployed in phases around Europe as a hedge against potential missile attacks from the Middle East. That system would be incorporated into a broader alliance program that would seek to enhance and integrate individual NATO states' antimissile capabilities (RIA Novosti, Feb. 24).