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Russia Successfully Tests Two New Missile Systems


Russia has successfully test-fired a new intercontinental ballistic missile and a tactical shorter range cruise missile.

The Russian Defense Ministry says the RS-24 intercontinental missile is capable of carrying multiple, independently targeted warheads. It was launched Tuesday from a site in northwestern Russia, and successfully hit its target on the far eastern Kamchatka Peninsula.

Russian military officials also say a new Iskander cruise missile was successfully tested in the Astrakhan region.

Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov said the tests prove that Russian weapons can overcome any missile defense system.

The Kremlin is angered at U.S. plans to build a missile defense system in the Czech Republic and Poland. Russian President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday it is harmful and dangerous to turn Europe into what he described as a "powder keg" filled with new kinds of weapons.

Russia considers the U.S. missile defense system a threat to its security. Washington says it is aimed at meeting a threat from such states as Iran and is no danger to Russia or anyone else.

Meanwhile, a Pentagon spokesman says the United States would be disappointed if Russia stopped meeting its obligations under the Conventional Forces in Europe treaty.

The spokesman was responding to Mr. Putin's call Monday for a special meeting next month on the treaty's future. Mr. Putin has threatened to suspend Russian compliance with the treaty.

The arms deal was first signed in 1990 and revised in 1999. It limits the number of non-nuclear weapons in Europe. Some NATO countries have refused to ratify the revised version, demanding Russia pull its troops out of Georgia and Moldova. Mr. Putin says the issue has nothing to do with the treaty.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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