U.S. and Australian officials signed an agreement yesterday to cooperate on research and deployment of a ballistic missile defense system, the Washington Times reported (see GSN, July 7).
U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Australian Defense Minister Robert Hill signed the 25-year agreement at the State Department, making Australia a “participating country” in the U.S. missile defense program.
Hill said that his country does not see any immediate missile threats to its own security, but that collaboration with the United States would be a positive move.
“For us, it a long-term investment,” he said. “We believe that we have a responsibility to address not only the threats of today, but the threats we might face in the future,” he added (David Sands, Washington Times, July 8).