During the meeting of NATO foreign ministers Secretary General @JensStoltenberg noted that Allies and Russia had a substantial meeting on topics of common concern in the framework of the NATO-Russia Council (30.03.2017), including the situation in and around Ukraine, the security situation in Afghanistan and risk reduction and transparency.
“When tensions run high, it is even more important to keep talking with each other,” – said Stoltenberg. He expressed his content with the unfolding ‘dual-track’ approach to relations with Russia, increasing transparency, and engaging into in-depth discussion of ‘difficult issues,’ and ‘disagreements’. It was the fourth meeting of the Council after the period of halt over the Crimea sanctions, and the first on in 2017.
The evaluation of the Russian representative to NATO Alexandre #Grushko was less optimistic:
“I do not want to downplay the importance of such mutual information, but it is clear that the exchange of briefings is not enough to qualitatively change the security situation for the better, – ambassador Grushko said. – Dialogue for the sake of dialogue will not yield results unless the discussions are translated into concrete actions and decisions.”
“In order to create an appropriate context for joint work on restoring arms control mechanisms, it is necessary that NATO halts the process of pumping the “Eastern flank” with “iron,” leading to the undermining of regional stability.”, – Russian ambassador to NATO concluded.
There were no formal conclusions after the NATO-Russia Council sitting.