Friday, September 22, 2023

Russia warns of tensions with NATO and calls for “security guarantees”

Moscow says it will no longer trust the Atlantic Alliance.

Russia warns of tensions with NATO and calls for "security guarantees"

The Deputy Foreign Minister of Russia, Sergei Riabkov, has warned this Monday of a possible increase in tension with NATO and has asked the alliance for “security guarantees” since a confrontation could “shake the world.”

“The lack of progress in the political-diplomatic resolution of this problem will lead to a military response from Russia (…) and there will be a new wave of confrontation,” Riabkov told the Sputnik news agency.

Ryabkov thus responds to the request of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who after a meeting with several senior officials, has asked Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to reduce tension with the international community to avoid conflicts on the country’s western borders. In this regard, it has emphasized the importance of achieving “credible and durable” security guarantees.

The Russian deputy minister recalled in turn that Moscow has delayed the deployment of medium and short-range missiles after the United States broke the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty in August 2019. “Today we have not deployed those missiles and we urge NATO and the United States to join the moratorium, “he said.

However, the NATO member countries have for the moment refused to join this moratorium and have left the door open for a missile deployment of these characteristics in Europe. Riabkov has advocated establishing a dialogue to resolve the matter. “We are going to focus on working with the Americans (…) which is logical given their leadership role in the alliance,” he said.

The Russian government has accused the United States of clinging to the idea that Russia is supposedly preparing to invade Ukraine, something that according to Moscow “does not make sense”. “The United States has no political or moral right to hold us accountable for what we are doing in our territory,” insisted Riabkov, who stated that this idea “does not exist and cannot exist.”

Thus, he regretted that Moscow no longer trusts NATO, especially on arms issues. “The claims that NATO has no intention of deploying nuclear-capable missiles of this type do not convince us of anything. We no longer trust NATO because many times they have told us one thing, the day after tomorrow another and a year later another, “he said.

For this reason, he said, one of the reasons why Russia demands guarantees against the extension of NATO towards its borders is because “all the promises of the bloc have been overthrown.” “NATO allies act in a way that works for them. without counting on the interests of our national security. For this reason, we no longer play these games or trust the Atlantic Alliance ”, he remarked.

Putin has repeatedly stressed that Russian troops are on Russian territory and that they are not threatening anyone. The accusations about the possible invasion of Ukraine have been rejected on several occasions by the Russian authorities, who have warned that these statements are used to deploy a greater number of NATO troops on their borders.

Diplomatic issues

On the other hand, the deputy minister has reported that Russia has sent more than 500 notes to the United States in which it demands the return of the “diplomatic properties” as a first step to “allow access to them.” “The number of diplomatic notes that our Embassy in Washington has sent to the State Department has already exceeded 500,” he recalled. These notes are sent every two weeks and, as confirmed, the Russian Government is ready to “continue to send them.”

“It is a way of underlining how much we are concerned and alarmed by this unbearable situation and to what extent the American arguments are unacceptable to us,” Riabkov added.

According to the diplomat, Putin raised this issue again with his American counterpart, Joe Biden, in their last conversation on December 7. “In his telephone conversation, the President of Russia very harshly raised this issue with Biden. And the very way of raising it, I am sure, drew additional attention to the matter “, he pointed out.

However, the presidents of both countries have not reached an agreement for the time being on these diplomatic issues. “We hope that, as a first step, they will give them access to our operational teams or simply to diplomats. (…) But this does not mean that we are satisfied with this. We need to get this property back. Its seizure is completely illegal, it does not fit into any canon,” he said.


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