NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg again shook hands with Russia to continue dialogue in the NATO-Russia Council, assuring that after the large Russian military operation on the border, allies are ready to seek a political solution to the crisis in Ukraine sounded the alarm of a new aggression.
At a press conference from Berlin, where he was visiting German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Stoltenberg insisted on his offer to Moscow for dialogue with NATO, noting that the 30 allies would follow up on last week’s meeting and submit a “written proposal” and have “a constructive outcome” of the meetings.
The Norwegian leader has proposed holding a series of councils with Russia after last week’s meeting, the first of its kind in two and a half years, aimed at relaunching dialogue with Moscow amid escalating tensions in Ukraine .
“I have invited all members of the NATO-Russia Council to a series of meetings. To address the relationship, allies stand ready to see how civilian and military lines of communication can be strengthened,” he said.
The NATO political leader has assured that the allies are ready to listen to Russia’s concerns, but without jeopardizing the principles of the European security order.
The military organization refuses to comply with Russia’s demands that NATO provide guarantees that it will not expand into Eastern Europe, and Stoltenberg reiterated to journalists that NATO will defend each state’s sovereign principle in order to forge its relations and alliances, and that it will not give up neither will its members defend.
“We need to be clear about the prospects for progress. But when tensions are high, dialogue is even more important and NATO allies will do whatever it takes to find a political way forward,” he concluded.