MOSCOW, December 9. /TASS/. Moscow will insist that Washington meet its demands to provide guarantees for the security of Russian western borders, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said at a meeting at the upper house of the Russian parliament.
"Unfortunately, we see that our warnings are ignored and NATO’s military infrastructure is getting as close to us as possible," he said at a round-table discussion on Russian-US relations at the Federation Council, the legislature’s press service reported. "That’s why Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered our diplomats to seek long-term security guarantees for Russia’s western borders - and they should be based on law and be legally binding."
"The point is to rule out any further NATO expansion eastward and the deployment of threatening weapons systems in close proximity to Russian territory," the diplomat went on to say. "We aren’t giving up on this issue and will insist that our demands are met."
Putin earlier called on NATO to start talks to give Russia "reliable and long-term security guarantees." Putin said Russia needed legally binding guarantees because the West had walked back on its previous verbal commitments.
Putin and his US counterpart Joe Biden held a two-hour video call on December 7 and agreed to task their teams to start consultations on this and other issues.