The passport of the citizen of the Donetsk people’s Republic
Photo: Sergey Konkov / TASS
Russia and NATO remain disagreements on Ukraine, said the NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg following the meeting of the Council Russia — NATO. The Alliance is concerned about the violations of ceasefire regime in the conflict zone, and Russia’s recognition of the documents of the self-proclaimed DNR and LNR
In Brussels in the headquarters of the NATO on Thursday, March 30, was held the first this year meeting of the Council Russia — NATO. It lasted longer than planned, so the press conference by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg started an hour late.
Before the meeting, Stoltenberg described the upcoming talks as “an important step towards greater predictability and transparency, which are now particularly necessary in the context of increased military activity along the borders”. Until 2014, meeting at the level of permanent representatives of countries not members of NATO took place on a monthly basis. However, after the annexation of Crimea to Russia practical cooperation has been frozen. However, it was agreed to maintain political dialogue, reminded Stoltenberg. The work of the Council Russia — NATO resumed in April 2016, last year it took three appointments. To resume meetings at the level of foreign Ministers is not planned, announced by the NATO Secretary General.
Following the meeting, Stoltenberg said that it was constructive. The focus, he said, was given to the situation in the East of Ukraine, in particular, observance of the ceasefire and the Minsk agreements. Also discussed was the increase in terrorist threats in Afghanistan.
On Ukraine, NATO and Russia continue to maintain clear differences, said Stoltenberg. NATO countries at the meeting expressed concern about Russia’s recognition of “identity cards issued by the separatists, the introduction of the ruble [in the territories of the breakaway republics] and the seizure of Ukrainian companies”. About the decision of the Russian authorities to temporarily recognize the documents issued by the authorities LC and DNR to citizens of Ukraine and persons without citizenship, became known on February 18, they will accept to resolve the conflict. Since March 1 enterprises Ukrainian jurisdiction in the breakaway Donetsk and Lugansk national republics was introduced external control.
Russia recognized the passports of residents of certain regions of Donbass Video: RBC
NATO has also noted an increase in cases of violations of the cease-fire. “Continuing intense military action, and there was a withdrawal of heavy weapons”, — stated Stoltenberg. NATO’s Secretary General calls on all parties to implement the Minsk agreements.
“All NATO members repeat and reiterate their full support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. We do not recognize and will not recognize the illegal annexation of Crimea by Russia”, — said Stoltenberg.
The meeting was also discussed the increase in military activity, risk reduction and prevention of military incidents between Russia and NATO. The dialogue was affected by the deployment of three new divisions in the West of Russia, as well as four battalions of the Alliance in the Baltic States and Poland. The decision to strengthen the Eastern frontier was made by NATO on 9 July last year at the summit in Warsaw. By June 2017 it is planned to place four multinational battalions in the Baltic States and Poland.
Stoltenberg also commented on the February decision of the NATO defence Ministers on strengthening the presence in the Black sea. “NATO does not want confrontation and the cold war with Russia and a new arms race in the black sea region, therefore, our actions are purely defensive in nature”, — said the Secretary General.