In a letter to Dagbladet newspaper, Russia warned again about the consequences if Norway chooses to be a part of the NATO missile shield.
The Government has appointed an expert group to consider a possible Norwegian contribution to the missile shield, something Russia reacted very sharply on. The new letter also adopted a harsh tone.
‘Since the U.S.A/NATO/Norway alliance does not want to solve this issue with diplomacy and through negotiation, there remains only one option, and it is a military/technical response.
Russia would have to strengthen its strategic nuclear forces, to make them able to overcome any missile shield’, was the message from the Russian embassy in Oslo.
Head of Communication, Frode Overland Andersen, of the Foreign Ministry stressed that NATO’s missile defense system is aimed against threats from outside the Euro-Atlantic area.
‘From the start, it has been made clear that NATO’s missile defense system is not directed against Russia. It is neither designed, or dimensioned to that end. NATO has, on the contrary, invited Russia to cooperate on missile defense, which they have denied. Missile defense is a defensive system’, he commented.
Andersen emphasized that Norwegian support to the NATO missile defense system has been stable since the previous government’s decision in 2010.
‘The ambassador, with reference to the Norwegian government’s platform in 2005, seems to fuse together the NATO shield with the Norwegian attitude toward the Bush administration’s proposed missile defense system. The system was never implemented. The Russian authorities are well aware of the Norwegian position on this issue’, Anderson said.
He added that any Norwegian contribution to the missile defense system has not yet been decided.
‘The question is being studied to ensure a necessary basis for decision making’, said the communications manager.
Earlier, Russia threatened a strong response if Norway is serious about contributing to the missile shield.
‘In the case of NATO missile defense systems being deployed in Norwegian territory, we will have to react to defend our security’, said press attaché’, Maxim Gurov, at the Russian embassy to Klassekampen newspaper in January.
In a press release that was sent out in the middle of last month, the Russian Embassy in Oslo came out with powerful, and more general criticism of the Norwegian authorities, and the Norwegian media.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today