Moscow does not exclude the possibility of convening a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC) soon after the Alliance’s summit that will be held in Warsaw, Poland, on July 8-9, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister AlexeyMeshkov told journalists on Monday.
"Consultations with the Alliance on the substance and timeframe of the meeting continue," the diplomat said. "We do not exclude the possibility of calling the NRC meeting soon after the NATO summit due to be held in Warsaw on July 8-9."
According to the top official, the key topic on the NATO-Russia Council regular meeting agenda will be the Alliance’s Warsaw summit decision on the strengthening its eastern flank.
"Consultations with the Alliance on the substance and timeframe of the meeting continue," the diplomat said. "We do not exclude the possibility of calling the NRC meeting soon after the NATO summit due to be held in Warsaw on July 8-9," he said.
"The decisions of the Alliance’s Warsaw meeting on the strengthening of the eastern flank of the Alliance and their consequences for all aspects of European security will be the key issue at the meeting," Meshkov said. "In the context of the ongoing creation of the US/NATO missile defense system in Europe, the antimissile problems will also be definitely discussed."
In addition, the NRC meeting is also planned to focus on the exchange of views on a number of other important issues of the regional and international agenda.
Previously, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the North Atlantic alliance Alexander Grushko told TASS that the meeting in the NRC format was not postponed. "The meeting is not postponed, we are in a working contact with NATO regarding the holding of the meeting - both in terms of time and in principle," Grushko said. "I think all should become clear soon."
In April 2014, the Alliance halted all practical cooperation between NATO and Russia including in the NRC amid the Ukrainian conflict and Crimea’s reunification with Russia.
The NRC met on 20 April 2016, almost two years after its last meeting, to discuss the crisis in and around Ukraine; issues related to military activities, transparency and risk reduction, and to assess the security situation in Afghanistan.