19:15 GMT +3 hours26 November 2014
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Belarus will not react yet to U.S. missile shield plan - Lukashenko

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Belarus has no plans to respond to U.S. plans to deploy a missile defense system in Central Europe, President Alexander Lukashenko said Thursday.
MINSK, December 18 (RIA Novosti) - Belarus has no plans to respond to U.S. plans to deploy a missile defense system in Central Europe, President Alexander Lukashenko said Thursday.

"Belarus is not yet going to react to missile defense deployment in Europe. First of all, there is no missile defense in Europe, and second, it is big money we don't have yet," Lukashenko said.

However, he added that if necessary, the country would find the money to respond.

Belarus has joined Russia in condemning U.S. plans to set up an interceptor missile base in Poland and a tracking radar in the Czech Republic, saying the missile shield would destroy the strategic balance of forces and threaten national security.

The United States says the system is needed to protect against attacks from "rogue" states such as Iran.