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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Iran Says Russia Won't Share Radar

TEHRAN, Iran -- Iran's Foreign Ministry said Sunday that it had received indications from President Vladimir Putin that he would not follow through with an offer to allow the United States to use a radar station in Azerbaijan for missile defense against Tehran.

"It seems Russia does not plan to make decisions that may cause instability and insecurity in the region, where it [Russia] is located," ministry spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini said.

Russia has not publicly altered its offer to share the Gabala radar station and Kremlin officials had no immediate comment Sunday on Iran's claim.

Hosseini said his ministry had summoned the Russian and Azeri ambassadors to discuss Putin's surprise counteroffer to U.S. plans to install a missile defense shield in Central Europe. He said Iranian ambassadors in Moscow and Baku, Azerbaijan's capital, had also discussed the issue with their host countries.

The U.S. administration, meanwhile, said Friday that it was treating Putin's proposal seriously -- despite comments from Defense Secretary Robert Gates a day earlier that Washington intended to proceed with its missile defense plans in Central Europe.

In Brussels, Gates on Friday met briefly with Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov and said the two had not discussed the missile defense plans at all.

"I guess I would have to say, honestly, I was somewhat surprised," Gates said.

Gates said he did not bring the matter up in his session with Serdyukov because "I felt I'd been pretty explicit yesterday in the session so I didn't feel the need to." Instead, Gates said, they talked about plans for a meeting between Putin and U.S. President George W. Bush in Maine on July 1 and 2.