Saturday Jun 01, 201301:45 AM GMT
Russian missiles put Israel at risk: US, Germany
US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) and German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle
US Secretary of State John Kerry (R) and German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle
Sat Jun 1, 2013 1:44AM
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US Secretary of State John Kerry and German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle say Russia’s delivery of S-300 missiles to Syria will hamper efforts at planned peace talks in Geneva and put Israel at risk.


"It is not helpful to have the S-300 transferred to the region while we are trying to organize this peace [conference] and create peace," Kerry said at a joint news conference with his German counterpart in Washington on Friday.

"We ask them again not to upset the balance within the region with respect to Israel," he said. "The weaponry that is being provided Assad whether it is an old contract or not, has a profoundly negative impact on the balance of interests and the stability of the region and it does put Israel at risk."

Westerwelle also said the Russian missiles would “endanger” the Geneva talks and put Israel’s security at risk.

The two top diplomats were referring to the joint US-Russian bid to hold an international conference on the crisis in Syria that will probably be held in mid-June in the Swiss city of Geneva.

Russia said on Tuesday that it would provide Syria with its S-300 air defense system in accordance with a previous contract. The announcement came a day after the European Union decided to end its arms embargo on Syria to lay the ground for arming militants against the Syrian government.

The warnings to Russia are made by two Western countries that provide the Israeli regime with the most advanced weaponry. In late April, Israel received its fifth Dolfin-class submarine, capable of launching missiles with nuclear warheads, from Germany.

The first two nuclear submarines were donated for free while the third was given at a 50-percent discount. Germany also paid for a third of the fourth and fifth submarines, according to International Defense News.

Berlin will also give another nuclear submarine to Israel in several years and will pay about 135 million euro of the total 600-million-euro cost of the submarine.

In March, President Barack Obama said the US would support Israel with military aid through 2017 and even beyond. This year’s agreement would increase the current aid from $2.4 to $3.1 billion every year.

Obama also said his team would work with the Congress about another $600 million over the next two years for the development of Israel’s Iron Dome missile system.

MA/MHB
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