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Czech Republic, U.S. agree on final text of SOFA treaty
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10:20, September 06, 2008

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The Czech Republic and the United States have agreed on the final text of the SOFA treaty (Status of Forces Agreement) that specifies the legal framework of U.S. personnel at the planned radar base on Czech soil, the Czech news agency CTK said on Friday.

The Czech government is to deal with the treaty within two weeks, CTK reported.

A U.S. expert team again negotiated about the SOFA treaty in the Czech Republic for two days, the Czech Defense Ministry said, adding that the final text was prepared, with only details to be completed, such as proofreading.

Both sides are yet to confirm the final text of the treaty.

The main treaty on the radar base was signed by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg in early July.

The United States plans to build a radar base in the Czech Republic, along with an interceptor missile base in Poland, as part of its East European missile defense shield.

Russia is strongly opposed to the deployment of the system, saying it poses a threat to its national security. Czech opposition parties and some 70 percent of the country's citizens also oppose the project.

The radar treaties are yet to be ratified by the Czech parliament. It is not clear whether the government will muster enough votes for the treaty's ratification in parliament.

Source: Xinhua

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