Russia will enhance its strike nuclear capabilities if missile cooperation with NATO fails in the European missile defence project, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has said.

“I hope we will be able to forge a missile defence cooperation model. If we don’t, we will have to take retaliatory measures … This will mean forcing the development of our strike nuclear potential,” he added.

The Russian foreign minister had also warned that Russia may withdraw from the New Start treaty if the US does not agree to the proposals set on the missile shield.

Recently, the US refused a Russian request to provide legally binding guarantees that its European missile defence system would not be directed at Russia.

Russia and Nato had previously agreed to cooperate in the creation of a joint missile defence shield in Europe during a Nato-Russia Council meeting in Lisbon in November 2010, according to RIA Novosti.