NATO Chief: First Test Of Missile Defense Successful

world | May 14, 2012 | By RFE/RL 

NATO's chief says the first comprehensive test has been completed of the alliance's planned new missile-defense system in Europe.

Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, in an article in "The Wall Street Journal," says a U.S. ship, radar, and satellite, as well as interceptor batteries from Germany and the Netherlands, "conducted a series of simulated engagements to test the alliance's ability to defend against missile attacks."

Rasmussen described the test as a successful. Reports say NATO leaders are hoping to declare the start of an "interim capability" for the missile shield at their summit in Chicago on May 20-21.

The system, aimed at protecting against potential missile threats from outside Europe, is opposed by Russia, which fears it could threaten Russian national security.

Moscow has threatened countermeasures.

Based on reporting by AFP and "The Wall Street Journal"