MOSCOW, February 15. /TASS/. The position of NATO states hinders the full implementation of the initiative proposed by Finland’s President Sauli Niinisto on ensuring flight security over the Baltic, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Monday on the outcomes of the talks with Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto.
Lavrov said that he and his Finnish colleague had discussed the steps required to strengthen European security and de-escalate tensions in the region. "In this regard, we have stressed the importance of the well-known initiative of President Niinisto on air safety over the Baltic. To a significant extent, it has been implemented, however, it cannot be implemented fully due to the position of NATO states that do not wish to come to an agreement on all military planes flying with their transponders turned on," Lavrov said.
"We have also focused on the well-known Russian proposals that we put forward in our dialogue with NATO nearly a year ago and that include, along with the resolution of the transponder issue for military planes, reaching an agreement on moving the drills of the military forces of the alliance and the Russian Federation farther from the line of contact, agree on some specific distance, and on maintaining the distance that controls the proximity of Russian planes and the alliance’s planes, as well as the Navy," the minister said.