Romanian President Traian Basescu said in an interview with public television TVR 1 on Thursday evening that the statements made by Russian President Dmitri Medvedev regarding the US missile shield should not be dramatized. But he said Romania should provide the "comfort that these military instruments are not aimed at strikes against the Russian Federation".
Russian President Dmitri Medvedev warned on Wednesday that Russia might drop the new START treaty signed with the US at the risk of a return to the cold war era unless a deal is reached between the two countries regarding the US missile shield.
According to President Basescu, Medvedev's statement should be read through the lens of "the condescendence necessary to a head of state, of a major nuclear power". Which, he said, means that "at a proper moment we should provide President Medvedev with the comfort that these military instruments are not aimed at strikes against the Russian Federation" as "undoubtedly Mr Medvedev is himself ready to provide Romania with guarantees that no missile currently existing on the Russian Federation territory will never reach Romania's territory".
"We stick to our national interest and deal respectfully with anybody's position. He wants judicial guarantees. Of course Romania itself is wondering - do we have any judicial guarantee? We find out we don't. We have the right to discuss the issue", he said.
Romania and the US have reached a deal on the deployment of elements of the US missile shield in the Romanian town of Deveselu - an important step in the deployment of the US shield in Central and Eastern Europe.