Russia must ensure rapid response to Western missile deployment near its borders: Putin

MOSCOW, Dec. 21 (Xinhua) — Russian President Vladimir Putin said Monday that the country must respond promptly to Western missile deployment near its borders.

“It is equally important to strengthen the potential of non-nuclear deterrence, primarily in relation to high-precision weapons. We do not intend to produce and deploy intermediate and shorter-range missiles in the European part of Russia and other regions of the country,” the Kremlin said, citing the president during an annual meeting of the Defense Ministry Board.

“However, we must be ready to respond in a timely manner to the Western countries’ deployment of counterpart missiles near our borders,” he added.

He noted that this response should not only be aimed at the direct deployment locations of the relevant systems that pose a threat, but also points from where they are controlled.

During the meeting, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that there has been an increase by 15 percent in the intensity of U.S. surveillance activities near the Russian border, according to a statement published by Russian Defense Ministry.

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