NATO disappointed with Russia’s decision to suspend participation in CFE consultations

NATO is disappointed with Russia’s decision to suspend participation in the Joint Consultative Group on the Treaty of Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), the alliance’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told a press conference in Brussels on Wednesday.

NATO is disappointed with Russia’s decision to suspend participation in the Joint Consultative Group on the Treaty of Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), the alliance’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told a press conference in Brussels on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Russia’s Foreign Ministry said that Russia decided to suspend its participation in the Joint Consultative Group on CFE from March 11, 2015. Belarus will represent Russia’s interests in this format. Thus, Russia’s 2007 suspension of observance of its treaty obligations has become complete.

"This step [made] by the Russian side does not mean its rejection of further dialogue on control over conventional armed forces in Europe, if and when our partners are ready for it. We are still ready for joint work on the new regime of control over conventional armed forces in Europe, which will meet the interests of both Russia and other European countries," Anton Mazur, who headed Russia’s delegation at talks in Vienna on military security and arms control, said.

Russia’s State Duma sees no prospects for creating an analogue of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) under the current US Administration, head of the Duma Committee on Defense Vladimir Komoedov told TASS on Wednesday.

The actions of the US Administration have practically forced Russia to suspend observance of the treaty, Komoedov said. "Under the current US leadership, we will not see it," he added. "That is probably what they wanted - to free their own hands," he said, noting the start of another arms race. "We keep our defenses and will continue to do so. But this is inconvenient for us, we have already made many mistakes," Komoyedov stressed.

"We need to look for allies, develop ties with the East, including in the military sphere, strengthen our defense," Komoyedov, a former Black Sea Fleet commander, said.

First published by TASS.

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