Russian President Medvedev orders large-scale nuclear arsenal rearmament due to view of NATO encroachment.Submitted by alwayssimon on Tue, 03/17/2009 - 16:13
MOSCOW (AFP) – President Dmitry Medvedev on Tuesday announced a "large-scale" rearmament and renewal of Russia's nuclear arsenal, accusing NATO of pushing ahead with expansion near Russian borders.
Meeting defence chiefs in Moscow, Medvedev said he was determined to implement reforms to streamline Russia's bloated military and stressed Moscow continued to face several security threats needing robust defense capacity.
"From 2011, a large-scale rearmament of the army and navy will begin," Medvedev said.
He called for a renewal of Russia's nuclear weapons arsenal and added that NATO was pursuing a drive to expand the alliance's physical presence near Russia's borders.
"Analysis of the military-political situation in the world shows that a serious conflict potential remains in some regions," Medvedev said.
He listed local crises and international terrorism as security threats and also stated: "Attempts to expand the military infrastructure of NATO near the borders of our country are continuing.
"The primary task is to increase the combat readiness of our forces, first of all our strategic nuclear forces. They must be able to fulfil all tasks necessary to ensure Russia's security," Medvedev said.
And while he praised Russia's military thrust into Georgia last year in defence of the rebel region of South Ossetia, he also said the conflict had shown up the military's failings.
The comments came despite signs of a warming in US-Russian relations since the inauguration of President Barack Obama in January.
More of this article at: