Russia and China, meeting at a friendship summit, said Monday they wanted the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) pact between Moscow and Washington to be preserved unchanged.
"Russia and China stress the basic importance of the ABM treaty, which is a cornerstone of the strategic stability and the basis for reducing offensive weapons, and speak out for maintaining the treaty in its current form," the official Russian news agency quoted a joint declaration by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Jiang Zemin as saying.
U.S. plans to create an anti-missile defense system against "rogue states" contradict the ABM pact and Washington wants the document amended or scrapped.
Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said prior to the test that if the administration goes ahead with plans to build underground silos next year at Fort Greely, Alaska, for missile interceptors, it would violate the treaty, which bars national missile defenses. That, in turn, could spark a new arms race, he said.
"If those plans were realized in practice, they would seriously complicate negotiations and would signify the United States' exit from the ABM treaty," Ivanov said.
The Bush administration wants Russia to agree to amend or replace the treaty with an arrangement permitting testing and deployment of defenses against long-range missiles. It has said the U.S. will press forward with anti-ballistic missile testing.
©MMI, CBS Worldwide Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press and Reuters Limited contributed to this report