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Russia calls for equal security guarantees despite West’s stance — diplomat

March 02, 2:11 UTC+3 ATHENS

Russia's Permanent Representative to the EU Vladimir Chizhov said that "we have to acknowledge that today's situation is in a way much more dangerous than the one of the Cold War years"

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Russia's Permanent Representative at the EU Vladimir Chizhov

Russia's Permanent Representative at the EU Vladimir Chizhov

© Sergei Bobylev/TASS

ATHENS, March 1. /TASS/. Moscow continues standing up for the concept of equal security guarantees for all countries, Russian Permanent Representative to the European Union Vladimir Chizhov said at the 4th Delphi Economic Forum on Friday.

According to the diplomat, Russia positively assessed the principles of "security guarantees" outlined by NATO in its Strategic Concept in 2010 and suggested extending them to all countries of Europe. "The answer we got was: our proposal is for Alliance members only, so please, be content with second class security. It is clear that with such an approach talking about equal distribution of security guarantees over Eurasian space was pointless," he said.

Against this background, some European countries opted for a simplified way: they "gave up and rushed to join NATO without thinking that the day would come when they would be requested to incur unbearable and unjustified expenses, participate in missions and operations far from their borders and interests, as well as deploy foreign military bases on their territories," Chizhov said.

Meanwhile, the Russian proposal to sign a European Security Treaty that would have provided for making legally binding the well-known principle that no one shall enhance one’s security at the expense of security of others (enshrined as a political commitment in the OSCE Charter for European Security signed by 54 Heads of State and Government) remained unaddressed, he explained.

"However, even under such circumstances we do not give up and continue upholding the above-mentioned principles," he said. "Meanwhile, given particular aspects of Russian mentality, political culture and perhaps old-fashioned, as it may seem to many, concept of decency, Moscow never imposes anything on anyone and does not interfere in internal affairs of other states — contrary to statements certain capitals consider it possible to make following the fashion of blaming "omnipotent" Russia for all the troubles in the world," he stressed.

"We have to acknowledge that today's situation is in a way much more dangerous than the one of the Cold War years — then, for all the depth of ideological differences, common sense and responsibility for the world's fate pushed antagonistic powers to take wise decisions in the area of arms control and disarmament," Chizhov said.

"Today we are virtually on the edge of the last line. Its crossing will mean complete dismantling of checks and balances in the nuclear field. And it is not about passions or whims of particular leaders, it is rather about a consistent policy that was formed 17 years ago, at the times of another US Administration — the one that derailed the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty," he added.

"Each time Washington denounced another treaty with Russia it was done under an absolutely invented pretext. As a result the New START Treaty is in fact the only one left, its lifespan stretching only until 5 February 2021," he noted.

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