Views differ among CIS Defense Ministers

The participants in the meeting of the Council of CIS Defense Ministers, held in the town of Shchuchinsk, Kazakhstan, failed to come to terms on the "nonproliferation" of portable anti-aircraft missile systems.

A RIA Novosti correspondent was told at the headquarters for coordination of CIS military cooperation that "Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan have not signed the draft resolution of the Council of the CIS Heads of State "On Measures to Control the Sale of Igla and Strela Portable Anti-Aircraft Missile Systems." The draft was to be offered for debate at the next meeting of the Council of the CIS Heads of State.

The resolution has not been signed also by the Turkmenian representative, who did not attend the latest meeting of the CIS Defense Ministers, the correspondent was told at the headquarters for coordination of CIS military cooperation.

This question was put on the agenda of the meeting of the CIS Defense Ministers Council on Russia's proposal "with the purpose of increasing actions to combat terrorism and preventing terrorists from obtaining Igla and Strela portable anti-aircraft missile systems, a headquarters spokesman said.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said in his report at the meeting that portable anti-aircraft missile systems may become a dangerous weapon in the hands of terrorists.

Unfortunately, Ivanov said, such weapons uncontrollably become a possession of terrorists, who use them against civilian targets."

An example of this, he said, was the air crash of the Israeli civilian liner with 300 passengers on board, which had been shot down by a group of terrorists using a Soviet-made Strela missile.

The problem of "nonproliferation" of such missile systems, Ivanov said, already become a source of concern in the whole world. In particular, the G-8 leaders expressed concern over the uncontrollable spread of this dangerous type of weapons at their meeting in Evian, France.

The headquarters spokesmen did not say why Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan refused to sign this important document.

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