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Russia disappointed with results of Russian-NATO Council meeting

March 06, 2014, 4:43 UTC+3 BRUSSELS

“The meeting was just the reading out national statements,” said Alexander Grushko

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© AP Photo/Virginia Mayo

BRUSSELS, March 06. /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian side is disappointed with the results of the Russia-NATO Council meeting on the situation in Ukraine, Alexander Grushko, Russia’s Permanent Representative at NATO, said on Wednesday after an ambassadorial meeting of the Russia-NATO Council.

“We are disappointed with the results of this meeting,” he said. “Russia had expected it would feature a discussion where it we would be able to clarify our approaches to the settlement of the situation in Ukraine. But at the very beginning of the meeting, the NATO secretary general announced that the NATO Council had preferred not to wait till our today’s meeting and had passed a decision to suspend cooperation in certain areas.”

Such an approach, according to the Russian NATO ambassador, ran counter to all basic documents of the Russian-NATO Council, the Rome declaration and the Lisbon document “that state that before taking any decisions, Russia and the NATO countries would discuss problems, begin dialogue and try to agree a common position.”

“Today’s meeting was another evidence that NATO operates double standards and uses the Cold War stereotypes in respect of Russia,” Grushko noted. This is what we have been speaking against for years. We want to transform the structure of relations between Russia and NATO not in the format ‘one against twenty-eight’ or ‘one plus twenty-eight’ but as a pool of states that use the platform of the Russian-NATO Council to clarify their national approaches.”

“The meeting was just the reading out national statements,” he said, adding that the Russian side was sorry that there had been no in-depth dialogue. “At the same time, I would like to note that we could not help being surprised at persistent attempts to picture the situation as a conflict between Russia and Ukraine, which is not existent and cannot exist whatsoever.”

“All security threats, if any, stem entirely from the catastrophic domestic situation in Ukraine, which, to a greater extent, developed that way because many Western countries had exerted open pressure on public opinion in Ukraine urging it to draw “the right conclusions,” he stressed. “We see the way to solve the current problems in restoring the rule of law. The basis should be the February 21 agreement attested by foreign ministers of three NATO countries. This agreement provided for the formation of a representative government that must take into account the interests of all political forces and regions of the country, the launch of a constitutional reform and subsequent presidential elections. Naturally, the constitutional reform must also take due account of interests of all minorities and regions. This is we think to be a way out of this situation.

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