NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg: Russia cannot veto Ukraine's accession to NATO At the meeting in Brussels, NATO's position remained unchanged: third countries will not decide who can join the bloc and who cannot. The guarantees that Ukraine and Georgia will not join NATO were one of the main requirements of Moscow
NATO allies agree that Russia cannot veto Ukraine's entry into the alliance, and are ready to support Kiev. About this after negotiations with the Russian delegation in the framework of the Council Russia & mdash; NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said in Brussels.
“ All members agree on the key principle: that every state has the right to choose its own path … The Allies also agree that only Ukraine and 30 NATO allies can decide when Ukraine is ready to become a NATO member, '' & mdash ; Stoltenberg said.
He clarified that Russia cannot veto Ukraine's accession to NATO.
The talks with the Russian delegation, which lasted about four hours, Stoltenberg called it difficult, but useful.
“ We had a frank and open discussion on a wide range of issues, of course, with a focus on tensions in and around Ukraine. But the meeting was helpful & raquo;, & mdash; said the NATO Secretary General.
This meeting of the Council of Russia & mdash; NATO is the second in a series of security assurance talks. The first was held in Geneva between the delegations of the Russian Foreign Ministry and the US State Department, the third is expected on January 13 within the OSCE.
After the talks in Geneva, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, who heads the Russian delegation, reiterated that Russia was opposed to NATO's eastward movement. According to him, Moscow does not trust the alliance and insists on “ reinforced concrete, legally significant guarantees '' rather than promises that neither Ukraine nor Georgia will join the bloc. The diplomat called it a matter of Russia's national security.
US First Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, representing the American side, in turn reiterated that the United States “ will not allow anyone to close the door of NATO to another country. ''
Responding to concerns The West on the 'invasion' Russia to Ukraine, Ryabkov once again ruled out the possibility of aggression against a neighboring state.
President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly said that Russia needs “ exactly legal, legal guarantees '', since the West has not fulfilled its verbal obligations. As an example, he cited “ verbal assurances given '' the fact that NATO will not move east, nevertheless, according to him, the opposite was done.
On December 17, the Foreign Ministry released draft agreements with the United States on security guarantees and agreements on security measures with NATO.
They focus on guarantees of NATO's refusal to move further to the east, concentrate offensive weapons systems near the borders, join the alliance of states that were previously part of the USSR, including Ukraine, and conduct any military activity on the territory of Ukraine, as well as other states of Eastern Europe, Transcaucasia and Central Asia.
Putin pointed out several times that if the US and NATO missile systems appear in Ukraine, their flight time to Moscow will be reduced to seven & mdash; ten minutes, and in the case of hypersonic weapons & mdash; up to five.
Secretary General of the alliance Jens Stoltenberg, in turn, ruled out that the bloc ever made promises not to move east.
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