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4 Dec, 2009 17:59

Analyst praises “return to realism” by NATO

Dmitry Suslov, a deputy director of the council on foreign and defense policy, says NATO’s statements on relations with Russia are not breakthroughs but, rather, a return to reality.

“This is just a proposal, I would not call it a breakthrough … it is not guaranteed that it would eventually work out,” Suslov said, speaking of NATO’s statement of readiness to look into the possibility of a joint missile defense system with Russia and the US.

As for the perspective for closer relations between Russia and NATO, Suslov said that though the situation in Georgia remains a major irritant in these relations, this is certainly not the most important topic. Much more important, he said, was the fact that NATO was neither ready nor willing to discuss Medvedev’s proposal on a new architecture for European security.

Also, the deputy director of the Russian think tank said he believed it was a problem that NATO did not want to speak with Russia on equal terms about the situation in Afghanistan, but insisted on setting up a separate group for discussing relations with Russia, instead of including Russia as a member in the NATO council on Afghanistan operations.