The NATO and Russia evidenced this Wednesday “significant differences“And they did not move from their positions on situation in Ukraine and the security in Europe, on the First meeting that they celebrated in more than two years, but they did not close to continue talking.
“There are significant differences between the allies and Russia on these matters.” that “They will not be easy to overcome”, recognized the allied general secretary, Jens Stoltenberg, at a press conference in Brussels at the end of the first NATO-Russia Council, the main platform for dialogue between the two parties, since July 2019.
Nevertheless, consideror one “positive sign“that they have”sitting around it table and boarded important issues”, Such as the military reinforcement ordered by Moscow together with Ukraine and its implications for security in Europe.
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The two sides went about reviewing their red lines without compromise.
The allies insisted in which Russia downgrade the provoked tension for his military reinforcement beside Ukraine, respect the sovereignty e territorial integrity his neighbors and refrain from “adopting aggressive positions of force and malicious activities directed against the allies.”
Stoltenberg noted that eThey are willing to talk “from good faith”But, at the same time, they must be prepared if Russiato “one more time choose by confrontation“: They made it clear that if it uses force again against Ukraine it would be a” serious strategic mistake “that would have” severe consequences “and” high cost “.
The Norwegian politician explained that the Russian delegation, which was headed by his Deputy Foreign Minister, Alexander Grushko, reviewed the proposals about security in Europe which he did in December to NATO and the United States, fundamentally focused on the Alliance not continuing to expand near their borders.
Instead, the allies confirmed their “open door” policy, stressed that each country has the right to choose its own security arrangements and said that “they will not renounce their ability to protect and defend each other”, even “in the presence of troops in the eastern part of the Alliance ”.
ADVERENCES FROM MOSCOW
Its attempts from OTAN from build the Europ securitya “against and without Russia“they are cdoomed to failurewarned the Russian deputy foreign minister.
“We assume that the beginning from indivisible security must take into account the everyone’s interests and the attempts to build the security against and without Russia son counterproductive and they are doomed to fail “Grushkó told a press conference from Brussels that was broadcast live on Russian public television.
Grushkó indicated that “in a very frank and direct way” they had put on the table “that future degradation from situation it can have unpredictable and very serious consequences for European security. “
“If there is intimidation, there will be counterintimidation,” he replied, insisting that “it is imperative that (NATO) renounce the ‘open door’ policy and grant Russia legal guarantees of non-enlargement to the east.”
POSSIBILITY OF FUTURE DIALOGUE
In any case, the two parties expressed the need from resume dialogue Y to explore a calendar of future meetings, according to Stoltenberg, who specified that Russia was not yet in a position today to give an answer to specify dates.
The undersecretary of statisticsthe US, Wendy Sherman, who led the delegation of his country, pointed out in another press conference that did not hear from russia “new things in substance”And that“ what important is that, at end of the meeting, the Russians were unwilling a engage to a series of discussions, but they did not reject them either ”.
“All of us, including Russia, have to go back to our governments to decide the next steps,” he said.
“Dialogue is what we need, in different formats, bilaterally between Russia and the US, in the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and in the NATO-Russia Council,” said the Secretary General of the discussions with Moscow. that take place this week in different settings.
“There is a real risk of a new armed conflict in Europe, but that is why that meeting and others this week are so important,” he said.
Stoltenberg assured whats allies “no illusions are made “ about the prospects for progress in these conversations, but he recognized that, although the dialogue is “difficult”, it is “necessary”. EFE