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Russian Delegation Rejected From German Missile Conference

A ground-based missile interceptor is lowered into its missile silo during a emplacement at the Missile Defense Complex at Fort Greely, Alaska.

The Foreign Ministry announced on Friday that a Russian delegation has been barred from participating in an annual international conference on missile defense.

In a statement released on its website, the ministry lamented the fact that the halt in Russia's political and military exchanges on missile defense issues with its Western partners seemed to have spread to industry and expert circles. The statement said the event's organizers had turned down the Russian delegation because of "various recent complications" and the lack of "the necessary conditions for hosting Russian guests."

Slamming the rejection as an "ostrich approach" to resolving issues, the statement warned that such lack of dialogue was "fraught with violations of strategic balance and the disruption of international stability."

The 10th annual international conference on missile defense, which will be held in Mainz, Germany, from June 17 to 20, will host government officials, scholars and military industry representatives who work on missile defense issues.

Russia's Foreign Ministry claimed that it has repeatedly tried to engage its foreign colleagues on missile defense and related security issues but that its partners have "completely refused to talk."

"This situation only confirms our conclusions about the real purpose of the anti-missile potential being created by the United States and its allies," the statement said.

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