Index

State Department Noon Briefing


U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
DAILY PRESS BRIEFING

1:00 P.M. - TUESDAY, DECEMBER 26, 2000
(ON THE RECORD UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED)

Q: Do you have any comment on Russian deployment of Topol-M missiles,
which may be a response to NMD plans?

MR. REEKER: We are certainly aware, as ran on your wire, of today's
activation of the SS-27 missile, also known as the Topol-M. This is
part of Russia's strategic modernization program, and the activation
of this is a continuing process by which Russia is replacing
multiple-warhead intercontinental ballistic missiles designated for
elimination under the START II Treaty. Those are being replaced with
the single-warhead SS-27s, or Topol-Ms. So we support very much their
efforts to prepare for a post-START II environment, and that is
exactly what you are reading about in those reports.

Q: Let me just see if I understand that correctly. So these would --
the multi-warhead missiles were a violation of START II?

MR. REEKER: Under START II - and we could certainly get you some more
detailed information on that if you wish it - these missiles, the
multiple-warhead missiles, ICBMs, were designated for elimination, and
they are being replaced by these single-warhead SS-27, or Topol-Ms. So
this is exactly what has been envisioned under START II and part of
that process.

Q: So you don't see any connection with NMD at all?

MR. REEKER: I think I see exactly what I said: This is what was called
for under START II, and that is what is being implemented.

(The briefing was concluded at 1:25 P.M.)