Missile plan changes may provide opening for talks

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US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel (AP Photo)

US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel (AP Photo)

WASHINGTON (AP) — In adding 14 interceptors to a missile defense system based in Alaska, the U.S. is abandoning a key part of a European missile defense plan that’s been strongly opposed by Russia.

At the same time, the decision provides a potential opening for new arms control talks.

The Obama administration is citing development problems and a lack of money in canceling the interceptors that were to be deployed in Poland and possibly Romania early next decade.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says the cancellation is part of an overall restructuring of missile defense plans aimed at stopping missiles from North Korea and Iran.

The U.S. will spend $1 billion to increase the number of interceptors in Alaska aimed at countering the threat from North Korea.

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