NATO knew even before 2012 that Russia was planning to deploy Iskander missile systems to Kaliningrad because the previous-generation Tochka missile systems had become obsolete. However, Moscow is now describing the deployment of the missile systems as a response to the expansion of the alliance.
Russia deployed the Iskander missile systems to Kaliningrad last month. The official representative from NATO negatively assessed the deployment of the Russian missile systems, stated the vice president of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, Rasa Juknevičienė, Delfi reported.
“We knew even before 2012 that Iskander missile systems would eventually be deployed. When I worked in the Ministry of Defense it was already clear that the Tochka missile systems – an old model with much a smaller operational range – are deployed there and their resources will be exhausted. And when these resources are exhausted, they are replaced by new ones,” Juknevičienė said.
According to Juknevičienė, Russia is currently using the deployment of the Iskander missile systems for propaganda purposes. “Nevertheless, the information that the changes are allegedly being carried out due to approaching NATO is used for propaganda. It is just an ordinary lie as usual,” Juknevičienė summarized.
The deployment of the missile systems near Kaliningrad didn’t come as a surprise for the secretary general of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg. According to him, Russia is following a familiar pattern of behavior.