Czech Republic to continue negotiations with US on new type of missile defence
The Czech Republic is to continue negotiations with the US on possible participation on a new type of missile defence shield, the Czech Defence Minister Martin Barták has said. On Friday, he met with officials in Washington including US Defence Secretary Robert Gates and the head of the US National Security Council James Jones. Further high-level talks are expected by the end of the year and the Czechs have expressed an interest in having their experts join the Missile Defence Agency (MDA). The latest developments come after the US scrapped plans for a tracking radar in the Czech Republic and interceptor rockets in Poland this week – components of a system backed by former US president George W. Bush. Instead, the US will now look into creating a mobile ground-based system, blocking the threat of short and mid-range rockets, which could go into operation in 2015. US Defence Secretary Robert Gates made clear on Friday that the Czech Republic and Poland but also other EU countries were possible candidates for participation in the project.