Security talks with West 'not very inspiring', Russian diplomat tells RT
The head of the Russian delegation at arms control talks in Vienna told RT on Thursday that the results of recent talks with the West were “not very inspiring.” However, Moscow, nevertheless, hopes for a diplomatic solution to the heightened tensions with the US-led military bloc, Konstantin Gavrilov explained.
“We delivered our position to our partners. We are waiting for written responses from the US and from NATO,” he outlined.
“It’s a question not of months [or] weeks. It’s a question of days. We cannot permit … long negotiations on this issue. It’s necessary to decide quickly. And the Americans, and NATO countries – they know [our] position. We need a quick response.”
The diplomat stopped short of mentioning specific deadlines, reiterating that Russia expects some progress to be made during a meeting between Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Friday in Geneva, Switzerland.
“We’re always ready for unforeseen developments, but hope for the best,” Gavrilov said.
The diplomat added that if the talks fall apart completely, the Kremlin will resort to “other means” of ensuring the country's security, including listening to advice from military experts.
Russia wants security guarantees from the US and NATO, including a treaty that would ban the bloc’s further expansion eastward and the deployment of additional troops along Russian borders. NATO has so far refused to commit to non-enlargement.
Western countries, in turn, accuse Russia of amassing troops and military hardware close to Ukrainian borders. Moscow has denied planning to attack its neighbor.
Russia held separate talks with the US, NATO and the OSCE last week, with each side stressing the importance of dialogue and de-escalation.