Rice warns Putin, we are indivisible

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice Monday said that Washington and its allies cannot be divided on their mutual defense as a bitter row escalated over a proposed US missile defence shield in eastern Europe.

Rice warns Putin, we are indivisible
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice Monday said that Washington and its allies cannot be divided on their mutual defense as a bitter row escalated over a proposed US missile defence shield in eastern Europe.

"The security of the United States and the security of European allies is indivisible," Rice said on the margins of the Organization of American States gathering here.

"It doesn't really help anybody to start threatening Europeans," said Rice.

The top US diplomat said relations between the two countries had been transformed since the Cold War and that there was no need to revert to hostile rhetoric from a bygone era.

Rice said US officials "don't consider Russia adversary and I hope they don't consider the United States an adversary."

She said that Washington and Moscow "are cooperating in a whole range of things," including nuclear proliferation, Iran, North Korea and terrorism.

"This is 2007 and not 1987," Rice continued.

"This isn't the Soviet Union and we need to drop the rhetoric that sounds like what the United States and the Soviet Union used to say about each other, and realize that the United States and Russia are in a very different period."

Rice said that US officials "have been very active in talking to the Russians about this, not just explaining, but exploring it.

"We are prepared to do more of that," she said.

Putin recently talked openly of a "new arms race" and warned that Russia would have new targets in Europe if Washington went ahead with plans to place elements of a missile defence system in the Czech Republic and Poland, countries once under Moscow's rule but now members of NATO.

Last Mod: 05 Haziran 2007, 17:30
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