Russia's New Relations With Nato Do Not Intend Membership Or Veto On Its Decisions

New relations with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation do not intend for Russia membership in the Alliance or the right of veto on its decisions. This was said in Brussels on Thursday by a high-ranking representative of NATO in a comment on the discussion unfolded here at a session of the North Atlantic Council at the foreign-ministerial level. To him, the Council session expressed the unanimous opinion that the emerging singular opportunity for the development of closer NATO-Russia relations should be jumped at. The dialogue should be broadened and a new mechanism of this dialogue and, possibly, a new mechanism of taking decisions by 20 countries should be elaborated. The NATO representative voiced the opinion that "forward movement" in relations with Russia should be "cautious". Nothing can be allowed that would limit "the traditional flexibility and manoeuvrability" of taking decisions by the 19 members of NATO. The principled difference between such a mechanism and the current Russia-NATO Joint Permanent Council can be that representatives of 19 countries of the Alliance forge a single coordinated opinion, while the new format will intend a general discussion between 20 instead of within the 19 Plus 1 format, said the NATO representative.