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PRESS RELEASE


Russia and China Urge U.S., South Korea To Revise Decision on THAAD Anti-Missile System Deployment

April 29, 2017 (EIRNS)—Both Russia and China are urging the United States and South Korea to revise a decision on deploying the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system, which is an "additional destabilizing factor in the region," Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said at a UN Security Council session yesterday.

"It is not only we who perceived this step very negatively. We are once again urging both the United States and the Republic of Korea to re-consider its expediency and other regional states not to yield to the temptation of joining such destabilizing efforts,"

he said.

"We are urging the North Korean authorities to halt their banned programs and return to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and the IAEA’s [International Atomic Energy Agency] control,"

the Russian diplomat said.

At the same time, Gatilov urged members of the Security Council to be aware that North Korea "will hardly give up nuclear weapons as long as it feels a direct threat to its security."

"This is precisely how North Koreans qualify regular large-scale maneuvers and drills by the United States and its allies in the region, and also the dispatch to that region of a U.S. naval armada as we witnessed this month,"

Gatilov said.

As for China, on April 26 Geng Shuang, the Foreign Ministry spokesman, responded to the rush deployment of THAAD in South Korea in the harshest of terms: "Cancel the deployment of THAAD. Otherwise China will decisively take necessary measures," Geng warned. The next day, South Korea’s Ministry of National Defense reported that, after the biannual meeting of the Integrated Defense Dialogue in Washington on April 27, the U.S. and South Korea had agreed to institute

"measures available in all aspects, including the regular deployment of U.S. strategic assets." Sputnik noted that "these assets include the U.S. B-52, B-2 and B-1B bombers; F-35 fighter jets; and aircraft carriers usually housed at American bases in South Korea, Japan or Guam."

Pentagon spokesman Jeff Davis on April 28 reported that the deployment of the THAAD system in South Korea "is moving very quickly; it will [have] initial operational capability very soon."