GENEVA, January 10. /TASS/. Moscow will not back away from its security guarantee demands and the balance of interests between Russia and NATO can be found even in this case, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said after the Russia-US consultations on security guarantees on Monday.
“In our scale of priorities, three areas that I have mentioned represent the demands that we cannot back away from. I am confident that a general balance of interests suiting all the parties, a balance of interests between Russia, on the one hand, and the NATO group, on the other hand, can be found even in such a disposition,” the senior Russian diplomat said.
For the first time in the diplomatic practice of many decades, the draft documents handed over to the United States and NATO were formulated “so straightforwardly, firmly and without any elements of ambiguity inadmissible in this case” and were published several days after their transfer, Ryabkov said.
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Key takeaways from first day of US-Russia European security talks
Jan 10, 2021
The US and Russia are no closer to resolving their strategic impasse after talks in Switzerland, with Washington refusing any limitations on NATO expansion and Moscow insisting the bloc must “never” include Ukraine and Georgia.
The encounter in Geneva between US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov lasted for more than seven hours on Monday. Its main focus was a proposal Moscow sent to the US last month, and made public on December 17, insisting on curbing NATO’s further expansion and deployment of offensive weapons on Russian borders.
“For us, it’s absolutely mandatory to make sure that Ukraine never ever becomes a member of NATO,” Ryabkov told reporters on Monday. The same goes for the former Soviet republic of Georgia, he added. Moscow’s non-negotiable demand is that NATO change its 2008 platform that opened the door for membership to the two countries, the diplomat added.
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