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Russia views nukes as basis for global stability

LONDON. July 13 (Interfax) - Moscow still considers nuclear weapons to be the basis of global stability, said Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov.

Delivering a report in English on "Russia and NATO: Strategic Partners Responding to Emerging Threats" at the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies on Tuesday, Ivanov noted that new conditions do not necessarily lead to the dismantling of the entire military-political heritage of the past.

He said that nuclear deterrence is a burden that great powers have to carry and the politicians who went through the school of nuclear deterrence are usually more realistic. If this phenomenon did not exist, the modern world would be far more violent, he said.

The Russian leadership views the guaranteed protection of Russia's and its allies' sovereignty, territorial integrity, and other vitally important interests a priority in the nuclear deterrence field, Ivanov said.

The defense minister said Russia is closely following American programs to create super-small nuclear warheads, because any new type of weapon adds new elements to the general picture of global stability, which must be taken into consideration in military plans.

Russia is prepared to take part in providing global strategic stability regardless of the development of the world military or political situation, in which strategic threats are coming to the forefront, Ivanov said.