ATHENS, 15 February. /Corr. Denis Kabanov/. The Munich security conference showed that the West was divided into supporters and opponents of confrontation with Russia. This opinion was expressed by the Chairman of the Duma Committee on international Affairs Alexei Pushkov at a meeting with journalists organized by the Russian Embassy in Greece.
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“The Munich conference showed, in what position now are the relations between the West and Russia, he said. – The main thing is that in Europe and generally in the Western Alliance there are two trends: deployment of long-term cold war against Russia and the second trend is a preservation partnership between Russia and the European Union”.
“The first media trends made in Munich Mr. Jens Stoltenberg (NATO Secretary General), who made the classic speech of the cold war, said the West has two threats – one from the South, the other from the East, but almost all of his speech was devoted to the so-called threat from the East, – said the MP. And Mr. Stoltenberg said in his speech, the formula of relations with Russia, which is not feasible. He said that we need more intimidation and more dialogue, but I must say that if NATO will go the way of greater deterrence, then the dialogue will be impossible.”
Stoltenberg: NATO does not seek a new cold war, but Russia is not currently a partner
“Another trend, this trend, which was also announced in Munich. This is the point of view that the West should not follow the path of the cold war, and needs cooperation with Russia, without which it is impossible to solve the problem of the Syrian settlement, the refugee problem and generally to achieve stability in the middle East – said the Chairman of state Duma Committee on international Affairs. – This trend, in particular, was presented by the Minister of foreign Affairs of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier, and French Prime Minister Manuel Valls, who several times repeated that the main enemy of the European community is a grouping “Islamic state” (banned in Russia), and the main task now is an effective fight against terrorism”.
“In the negotiations in Athens, we once again decided that Greece definitely belongs to those EU countries that favour long-term and serious cooperation with Russia and which, it is assumed that this interaction there is no alternative,” concluded Pushkov.
All sanctions of the West against Russia
Pushkov said that NATO now there is a strong desire to expand the operation to patrol the Aegean sea forces of the Alliance, to accept military involvement in the Syrian crisis.
“As far as I know, Greece has agreed to such an operation, based on the need to streamline the process of crossing the sea of space and reaching the Greek shores (refugees and migrants), he said. – In my opinion, NATO is now there is a strong desire to expand this operation, which is operation control, in order to accept military involvement in the Syrian crisis. I know that in the capitals of NATO countries involved and there is a negative orientation about this – those countries that consider it necessary to somehow participate in the fight against grouping “Islamic state” (banned in Russia), so to speak, in the presence on the spot – they decide on an individual basis. So does Britain, so does France so does Germany”.
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© EPA/VALDA KALNINA
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“I understand that the principle is still there, and to expect any of the NATO operation in Syria is not necessary, – said Pushkov. – First, it greatly complicate the overall situation, and secondly, NATO is not ready for such an operation. Such an operation would be dangerous for NATO, because NATO tried by military means to influence the balance of power, it lasted for many years, and the situation has not moved for the better.”
According to the Chairman of the Duma Committee on international Affairs, there are other dangers. “We understand that, say, Turkey is a NATO member and Turkey, shooting down the Russian plane, put NATO in an exceptionally difficult situation, – he stressed. Then the leadership of the Alliance was, on the one hand, is forced to justify Turkey, on the other hand – could be involved in any conflict between Russia and Turkey, that NATO is absolutely not included. So I think that NATO will try to stay away from Syria”.
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“The participation of the Alliance in patrols, as I understand it, due to the fact that NATO still defiantly was aside from the Syrian problem, – said the MP. – That is a feeling that NATO was engaged exclusively in the fictitious Russian threat and how to respond to a fictitious Russian threat. To show that the Alliance is alive and kicking – this, in particular, one purpose of the NATO presence in the region.”
During your stay in Athens Pushkov met with the Minister of national defence of Greece Panos Kammenos, President of the Greek Parliament Nikos Fulsom and his colleague, the head of parliamentary Committee for defence and foreign Affairs Konstantinos, Binacom. During the meeting they discussed wide range of issues, including the situation in Syria and the Ukrainian crisis.