Indian anti-satellite missile test ‘largely’ a result of US destroying arms control – Moscow

The destructive US policies towards a global arms control system, as well as the persistent desire to weaponize space, are largely to blame for India’s test of an anti-satellite missile, the Russian Foreign Ministry has said.

The test of a satellite killer weapon, footage of which was released on Wednesday, has raised concerns in Moscow, with the Russian Foreign Ministry warning against an arms race in space.

READ MORE: Footage of India’s satellite-killer missile launch appears online (VIDEO)

“We have to note that this step is in many respects the result of the deteriorating situation in the field of arms control. Russia has repeatedly warned that the destructive actions of the United States to undermine the entire architecture of international security and strategic stability,” the ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

The “one-sided and unlimited expansion” of the US missile defense systems, as well as “Washington’s reluctance to abandon plans for deploying weapons in space” prompt other states to flex muscles in the same fields, the ministry added. At the same time, Russian diplomats have acknowledged India’s statements that the test was not a message to any particular country and that New Delhi opposes the weaponization of space.

Moscow, on its part, called on the international community to step up and adopt a legally-binding solution to keep space arms-free. The existing 1967 Outer Space Treaty bans construction of military installations and weapons of mass destruction from space.

The document, however, has certain loopholes in it, namely it does not prohibit deployment of conventional weapons in space. A joint Russian-Chinese draft for a new space treaty, tabled a few years ago, is a good base for a comprehensive solution on keeping space peaceful, the ministry concluded, urging India to join the efforts of Moscow and Beijing.

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