A new space centre that will give NATO member states the chance to observe outer space and satellites, as well as collect data on possible threats, and monitor how space debris moves is planned to be built in Germany, according to NATO's Secretary-General.

The US Ramstein Air Base in Germany's state of Rhineland-Pfalz, will host a new allied space centre, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg confirmed.

According to Stoltenberg, NATO defence ministers are expected to agree on the space centre in the Ramstein base on 22 October.

"Tomorrow, I expect, ministers will agree to establish a new NATO space centre at the allied air command in Ramstein, Germany", Stoltenberg told a press conference before a meeting of defence ministers.

The Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg, insisited that NATO has no interest in militarising outer space but simply in raising awareness of the challenges which exist.

Stoltenberg also said that a number of countries, including Russia and China, are developing systems that can "blind", disable and destroy satellites in near-Earth space. With this in mind, he said, it is extremely important for NATO to have a presence in space to ensure the continued working of communications and navigation and the detection of missile launches.

NATO has repeatedly voiced its concerns over Russian military activities near its borders. Moscow has stressed that it is NATO which is approaching the Russian borders and using the alleged Russian threat as a pretext for military build-up in Eastern Europe.

NATO Chief Welcomes Progress on New Russian-US START Talks

Jens Stoltenberg continued by saying that he welcomes the recent progress in Russian-US talks on extending the New (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty) START.

"What is now at stake is the future of the New START agreement, which ends early next year. Allies support the extensions of New START by the United States and Russia. And I welcome progress on this issue in recent days", Stoltenberg said.

On 20 October, Russia said it was ready for both countries to freeze their nuclear warhead arsenal and extend the agreement for one year. The US State Department said later in the day that it was prepared to meet immediately to finalise the agreement.

Last week, Russia's President Vladimir Putin said a world without the New START would represent a full-blown threat. The Russian leader appeared to backtrack on the proposal to prolong the deal by five years and suggested instead extending it for one year, without any conditions, so that the two sides could discuss all the parameters of arms control during this period.