Russia calls report of Ukrainian missile system request 'provocation'

Russia said on Wednesday that a reported Ukrainian request for THAAD missile defense systems from the United States was a "provocation" and that seriously considering such supplies would deal a setback for the Ukraine crisis, RIA news agency reported.

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov was commenting on a Russian media report that Kyiv had made the request. RIA quoted him as saying that if Washington seriously considered such supplies, it would reduce the odds of a political diplomatic resolution to the standoff over Ukraine.

In separate comments, another deputy foreign minister, Alexander Pankin, said Moscow hoped the tensions over Ukraine and Russia's security demands from the West would be resolved diplomatically, the Interfax news agency reported.