The USA on 11 May 2016 launched the Phase 2 of the European Phased Adaptive Approach (EPAA) missile defence system in Romania.
As part of this, a new ground-based missile defense system will be set up at the US naval support facility in Deveselu, Romania.
Details related to the system
• It was set up as part of the USA-Romanian Ballistic Missile Defense Agreement that was signed in 2011.
• It is equipped to counter threats from short and medium-range missiles with the use of SM-3 missile interceptors.
• It will be built and maintained by the USA. It will be jointly operated by the USA and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).
• It is the first land-based defensive missile launcher in Europe and will join other elements of the NATO defensive shield located in Germany, Turkey and Spain.
About European Phased Adaptive Approach
• It was announced by the President of the USA Barack Obama in 2009.
• Its purpose is to protect the United States, US deployed forces, European allies and partners against the threat of ballistic missiles.
• It is intended to replace the George Bush administration's planned bilateral deployment of a different system to Poland and the Czech Republic.
• Unlike the USA-centric plan of Bush, the EPAA pursues a NATO-centric approach using alternate technology.
• It has the following four phases –
Phase 1: A land-based early warning radar system was set up in Turkey to address short- and medium-range ballistic missile threats.
Phase 2: Land based ballistic missile defense system in Romania.
Phase 3: It seeks to improve coverage against medium- and intermediate-range missile threats with an additional land-based SM-3 site in Poland. It will be completed by 2018.
Phase 4: It seeks to counter medium- and intermediate-range missiles and potential future inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) threats from the Middle East. It will be completed by 2020.
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What: Launched by the USA
When: 11 May 2016