Congress leadership to permit the resumption of works on a strategic Anti-Ballistic Missiles defence system (ABM). Chairman of the Committee for National Security Fred Spence (a Republican from South Carolina) told journalists that he had urged the Russian MPs to "weigh the risk" linked with the supply of reactor technologies to a country which is obviously interested in the development of its military nuclear programme. However, the arguments of the American law-makers were received rather sceptically by the guests. "Russia has weighty grounds to reject America's attempts to torpedo this deal," member of the Russian State Duma Vladimir Averchev told a press conference after the talks. "The United States is selling an identical light-water reactor to North Korea, a country which, putting it mildly, is just as unreliable and dangerous as Iran."
Vice-Chairman of the Duma Committee for National Defence Aleksandr Piskunov said that the plans of Republican congressmen to resume works on the ABM programme could interfere with the approval of the START-2 treaty by the Russian Parliament. "It is absolutely obvious that the discussion of the possibility of implementing an ABM system will be fraught with serious consequences and will tell negatively on the upcoming ratification of an agreement on the further reduction of strategic offensive weapons," he noted.