Stoltenberg: NATO-Russia Council Remains Important Forum for Dialogue

Defense | July 13, 2016, Wednesday // 21:12|  views

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg speaks to the media during a news conference following a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council, in Brussels, Belgium, 13 July 2016. Photo: EPA

Following the meeting of the NATO-Russia Council on Wednesday, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg highlighted the importance of the political dialogue between the Alliance and Moscow.

The meeting discussed some of the most important issues on the Euro-Atlantic security agenda, NATO's press service informs.

The main focus was on the crisis in Ukraine and the need to fully implement the Minsk agreements.

NATO member countries were firm in their support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.

Stoltenberg stated that all signatories to the Minsk agreements have to fulfill their commitments and noted that Russia has significant responsibility in this respect.

According to him, the Russian involvement in Ukraine undermined Euro-Atlantic security as well as the relations between the Alliance and Moscow.

In his opinion, the peaceful resolution of the conflict in eastern Ukraine would contribute to the overall improvement of the relations between NATO and Russia.

Other topics of discussion included transparency and risk reduction. NATO informed Russia of the decisions taken at last week's summit in Warsaw. In return, Russia informed the Alliance of the analysis and steps it has taken.

The Russian delegation raised a proposal on air safety in the Baltic Sea and Stoltenberg welcomed the signals demonstrated by Russia that it was willing to pursue risk reduction measures.

The security situation in Afghanistan was also among the topics discussed. Stoltenberg noted the decision taken by NATO at the Warsaw summit to sustain its military presence beyond 2016 with current levels of troops and to continue funding Afghan security forces until 2020.

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Tags: NATO, Russia, Ukraine, Minsk agreement, Afghanistan, Baltic Sea


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