MOSCOW – Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Aleksandr Grushko said on Monday that Moscow sees no sign that NATO knows how to get out of the impasse in relations with Russia.
According to the deputy minister, the cooperation between Russia and NATO in the civil and military area has completely ended.
“NATO itself has given up the positive agenda in relations with Russia, which does not exist and for the moment there are no signs that NATO knows how to get out of this impasse,” he said.
However, the deputy minister detailed that Russia continues to maintain military contacts with certain countries of the alliance
“Today there is an objective need for political dialogue and for maintaining contacts at the level of military analysts. NATO has refused practical cooperation with us to enhance security, but there is an objective need for joint work to reduce the risk of accidental escalation, to prevent incidents. With certain NATO countries there are such contacts, with the alliance in general – no,” he said.
In addition, Grushko pointed out that the differences within the alliance are now greater than before and that NATO is trying to consolidate itself at the expense of the so-called “Russian threat”.
“Today these differences are even deeper than before, but unfortunately, no better way to consolidate the bloc was found than to shake off the dust of the ‘Russian threat’,” he said.
As a result, Russia has been dealing with NATO not only with the revival of Cold War rhetoric but also with a military development of the alliance following “these same footsteps,” said the deputy foreign minister Russian.
“All of this, together with the realization of the plans to create a global anti-missile defense system, the US intention to get rid of limitations in the area of arms control, such as the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), form a the risks of an uncontrollable escalation of military tension and the arms race,” he added.
Aleksandr Grushko pointed out that the current crisis in relations between Russia and NATO is not the first, but is the longest.
“There have already been situations where our relations were interrupted: in 1999, due to the bombing of Yugoslavia by NATO forces, and in 2008 after the conflict in South Ossetia. Today’s crisis is not the first but is the longest,” concluded the diplomat.