"We consider the Russia-NATO Council as a useful mechanism for consultations between Russia and NATO on key security issues."EPA / Vostock-photo
Russia is open for building relations with NATO but will take into account NATO’s readiness for equal partnership, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a report summing up the 2016 foreign policy results that was posted on its official website on Dec. 27.
"NATO’s leaders continued to realize the package of measures on expanding the alliance’s military presence and military infrastructure development in countries of Central and Eastern Europe, Baltic states and in the Black Sea that was adopted at the alliance’s summit in Wales in 2014," the ministry said. "The alliance’s Warsaw summit in July endorsed a long-term course towards strengthening of the bloc’s military component with an eye of preserving its dominating positions in the Euro-Atlantic region and confirmed its commitment to military political containment of our country."
Nevertheless, after an almost two-year break, NATO initiated ambassadorial meetings of the Russia-NATO council in April, July and December. The agenda of those meetings included "the crisis in Ukraine, issues of security in Afghanistan and risks stemming from NATO’s military buildup along Russia’s western borders," the ministry noted. "We consider the Russia-NATO Council as a useful mechanism for consultations between Russia and NATO on key security issues."
"We are open to build relations with the alliance based on its degree of readiness for equal partnership, strict observance of the principles and norm of international law, real steps to ensuring common space of peace, security and stability in the Euro-Atlantic region on principles of mutual trust, transparency and predictability, implementation by each of its member states of its liabilities undertaken within the Russia-NATO Council not to ensure their security at the expense of security of other states, and liabilities on military restraint in line with the Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security between NATO and Russia of May 27, 1997," the ministry said.
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