MOSCOW, December 3. /TASS/. The only way to resolve Europe’s deplorable security situation is for Moscow and NATO to develop long-term agreements preventing the alliance’s eastward expansion, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a statement.
"Since the end of the Cold War, Russia has repeatedly received assurances that NATO’s jurisdiction and troops will not move an inch eastward. All these promises were forgotten and left unfulfilled. The current deplorable security situation in Europe is the result. We are confident that the only way to resolve the situation is to jointly develop long-term agreements that would prevent NATO’s further expansion to the east and the deployment of weapons systems that threaten us in the immediate vicinity of Russia’s borders," the statement reads.
Zakharova pointed out that a recent meeting of NATO foreign ministers, which took place in Latvia’s capital of Riga on November 30 to December 1, once again showed "the alliance’s obsession with the fight against imaginary threats" instead of cooperating with others in combating real challenges. "One of the focuses once again was Russia and its ‘possible aggression’ against Ukraine. Our country was blamed for allegedly doing something near NATO’s borders, threatening the alliance by moving its troops on its own territory. Still, if we look at things as they are, it was NATO that moved close to our borders. NATO’s military build-up and large-scale drills are taking place near our borders," the Russian diplomat added.
"Ukraine’s accession to NATO is a red line for us, and we have been talking about it for a long time. The ongoing policy aimed at dragging Kiev into the alliance’s orbit and NATO’s actual move to use Ukraine’s military infrastructure and attempts to turn Ukraine into a foothold in a standoff with Russia may lead to serious negative consequences and exacerbate the military and political situation in Europe," Zakharova concluded.