NATO chief in Moscow

NATO Secretary General George Robertson is meeting with the Russian leadership today, including Defence Minister Igor Sergeyev, Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov, Duma Speaker Gennady Seleznyov, Russia’s Security Council Secretary Sergei Ivanov, and Minister for Emergency Situations Sergei Shoigu. Russian President Vladimir Putin is also expected to meet with Gen. Robertson in the Kremlin. Global and European security, arms control, anti-missile defence, non-proliferation of mass destruction weapons, missiles and missile technologies are be discussed at the meetings. According to Interfax, Gen. Robertson will get acquainted with specific proposals for the creation of European non-strategic missile defence - the proposals represent President Putin's initiative to counterbalance the U.S. plans for deploying a national missile defence system. NATO expansion will also be touched upon. The officials will discuss Russia-NATO cooperation in keeping with the Partnership for Peace program and crises settlement, notably, in the Balkans.