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Moscow is concerned about possible US use of force in space -- Russian Foreign Ministry

Moscow is concerned about the persistent refusal of the United States to participate in the negotiation of international agreements on the prevention of the deployment of weapons in space, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Thursday in a commentary on the US State Department's annual Report on Adherence to and Compliance With Arms Control, Nonproliferation, and Disarmament Agreements and Commitments.

"The US persistent refusal to participate in the negotiation of international agreements on the prevention of the deployment of weapons in space is causing major concern," the ministry said. "Washington continues to be guided in this issue on its national conceptual considerations. The latter, in particular, provide for the possibility of applying preventive force measures even in case of suspected hostile actions by other states, which in itself is contrary to international law."

The Russian Foreign Ministry cited as an example the JP 3-14 Space Operations document of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, which in relation to the enemy's space capabilities allows "preventive diplomatic, informational, military and economic measures."

"These assumptions in the most obvious way are aligned with the draft code of conduct for outer space activities, which has been so zealously supported by the United States since 2012," the commentary says. "In particular, some provisions of the draft code entitle one state to unauthorised, supra-jurisdictional unilateral use of force in respect to spacecraft of other states."

"It is obvious that such doctrinal provisions and US-backed initiatives with the American administration's invariable desire to maintain a complete 'freedom of action' in outer space can hardly be seen as contributing to the international efforts to ensure equal and indivisible security for all and maintaining global stability," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

[Source: Itar Tass, Moscow, 11Jun15]

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