Tags: NATO | nuke | players | shield

NATO Chief Says Nuke Players Need Shield

Thursday, 22 April 2010 08:58 PM

NATO Secretary General Anders Rasmussen says NATO must work toward nuclear disarmament, but must also have missile defense against irrational countries and players with nuclear weapons. NATO foreign ministers meeting is being held in Tallinn, Estonia.

Secretary General Anders Rasmussen says the allies must discuss the issue of whether tactical nuclear weapons can serve as a credible deterrent against terrorists who may obtain a nuclear device. Turkey and former Soviet satellite countries want to keep such weapons. Several older members want them removed. He said in his personal opinion, U.S. tactical arms in Europe do serve as a deterrent.

Rasmussen says NATO members must also review their overall nuclear posture. He gives credit to President Obama for putting "new wind in the sails of reducing nuclear weapons and risk." He says the alliance must do what it can to support arms control, disarmament, and non-proliferation.

At the same time, Secretary General Rasmussen says NATO's reason for existence is to protect the 900-million people among its members.

"Missile defense is no replacement for an effective deterrent, but can compliment it, because there are states or other actors who might not be rational enough to be deterred by our nuclear weapons," said Anders Rasmussen.

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Thursday, 22 April 2010 08:58 PM
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