Russia-NATO Council meeting begins in Brussels

12 January


The meeting of the Russia-NATO Council has begun in the North Atlantic Alliance headquarters in Brussels, a RIA Novosti correspondent reports.


At the first Russia-NATO Council meeting in two years, Moscow is represented by an interdepartmental commission of the foreign and defense ministries, which includes Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko on behalf of the diplomatic mission.


The meeting is a continuation of the Russian-US talks on security guarantees, which took place on January 9-10 in Geneva. The sides are expected to try to discuss mutual concerns. The event is scheduled to last about three hours.


Tomorrow there will be consultations at the Vienna platform of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.


Grushko said before the trip that there is no agenda for the January 12 meeting as such; it will be an informal meeting. However, he said that Russia will travel there with absolutely realistic expectations and hope for a serious conversation.


NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg also expressed his confidence that "it is possible to have a meaningful dialogue with Russia".


At the end of 2021, Russia published drafts of a treaty with the US and an agreement with NATO on security guarantees. In particular, Moscow demanded that the Western partners not continue expanding the alliance eastward, not allow Ukraine to join the bloc and not establish military bases in post-Soviet countries.


The Russia-NATO Council was created in 2002 as a platform for the development of coordination. After 2008, work stalled, and relations became even more strained in 2014. The final deterioration in interaction occurred last October, when NATO withdrew the accreditation of eight Russian diplomats. In response, Moscow decided to suspend the work of the Permanent Mission to NATO Headquarters in Belgium and to close the military liaison mission and the bloc's information office in Moscow.

 

 

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Photo: EPA / OLIVIER HOSLET / POOL / TASS

Based on materials from RIA Novosti