TEMPO.CO, Brussels - NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen stated that the latest meeting of the NATO-Russia Council only goes as far as "maintaining an active dialogue”, yet it did not result in any significant progress on the key issue of the European missile defense.
Rasmussen made the statement during a NATO foreign ministers meeting in Brussels on April 23. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also joined the meeting.
Lavrov claimed that Moscow is currently studying the changes to the United States missile-defense program, as they try to get assurance that the system would not be used against Russia.
The US and its allies said that the European missile defense system, which consists of interceptor missiles and radar systems, is not intended to shoot down Russian missiles, instead, it is designed to protect them from potential threats from Iran and poses no danger to Russia. The US and Nato however, refused to provide any assurance.
In the meeting, NATO ministers also discussed the situation in Syria, as Rasmussen declared that the alliance was committed to protect all of its members, including Turkey.
Rasmussen also stated that NATO was concerned about the possible use of chemical weapons in Syria. However, Lavrov emphasized that any reports on the use of chemical weapons in Syria should be investigated carefully, as previous allegations were proven wrong.
Radio Free Europe | Reuters | Abdul Manan