NATO leaders support Russia-NATO meeting - source

The NATO leaders at the working dinner on July 8 at the summit in Warsaw supported organization of a Russia-NATO meeting

The NATO leaders at the working dinner on July 8 at the summit in Warsaw supported organization of a Russia-NATO meeting (on June 13 - TASS) and did not make any other decisions related to Russia, a source at NATO said on the fringes of summit on July 9.

"At the dinner, was an informal discussion about Russia, where no decisions were made, as the format does not expect any," the source said. "At the table were only leaders of the NATO 28 countries and invited Finland and Sweden, as well as heads of EU institutions."

"The participants supported fully organization of the Russia-NATO council next week (of July 11 - TASS)," the source said. "The leaders are looking forward to this meeting and consider the council a platform for a dialogue, which should continue."

"The NATO countries’ leaders supported it necessary to have a common position on Russia, they confirmed the alliance’s double approach to relations with Russia, which includes strong defense and dialogue," the source added.

"The leaders also analyzed Russia’s actions in Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova."

"They expressed absolute support for soonest fulfilment of the Minsk agreements and Russia’s obligations in the security sphere on Ukraine, which are fixed in those agreements," the source said adding at the dinner the leaders discussed "lowering risks" and "providing transparency in Europe," and thus they "discussed the flight security, were many leaders said the alliance should discuss this topic at the Russia-NATO council due next week."

Russia-NATO council

NATO froze all practical cooperation with the Russian Federation in April 2014 - after Crimea’s reunification with Russia. The operation of the NATO-Russia Council was preserved to maintain political dialogue channels open. The current meeting of the Council will become the third after the cooperation freeze. The Council’s first meeting was held June 2, 2014, its second on April 20, 2016.

Contacts between Russia and NATO continued in other formats too. On June 17, 2014, NATO’s Headquarters in Brussels held a Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) meeting at the level of permanent representatives; on May 19, 2015, the Belgian capital hosted a meeting between Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and the NATO secretary-general.

Later Lavrov and Stoltenberg met twice - on September 29, 2015 in New York and on February 12, 2016 in Munich.

Source: Tass.com

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