Russia and NATO return to the table

Russia and NATO are back in talks for the first time since the South Ossetian conflict in August 2008, during which relations between the two were broken off.

The first official meeting will be held at the ambassadorial level. The decision to restore the work of the Russia-NATO council came at the alliance’s summit earlier this month.

Despite the disagreements, Russia has become a key NATO partner in its operations in Afghanistan, because NATO can do very little without Russia’s assistance in this area, explains Andrey Kortunov, a political analyst and the president of New Russia Foundation:

“Russia is a key player and everyone in Brussels understands that without Russia being involved, it will be very difficult to handle the issue of the greater Middle East, of Afghanistan and neighboring countries,” says Kortunov.