Russia and NATO still disagree on withdrawal of Russian bases from Georgia

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov informed his counterparts from NATO countries about the progress of Russian-Georgian talks on withdrawal of Russian military bases from the Georgian territory.

NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer announced at a press conference after the conclusion of a Russia-NATO Council meeting that Sergei Lavrov had shared with his colleagues from NATO countries his assessment of the situation in Georgia, particularly, in relation to the progress of bilateral talks on military bases.

"Moscow and NATO have certain disagreements on this issue, especially on the mechanism of withdrawal of Russian bases from Georgia. Nevertheless, we are trying to find a common approach to the solution of this problem," Scheffer pointed out.

NATO officials believe that the process of withdrawal of Russian bases from Georgia must be conducted in the framework of the Istanbul agreements and in accordance with the ratification of the adjusted Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty, NATO Secretary General said.

He also noted that the issue of future creation of anti-terrorist centers on the territory of Georgia was not discussed during the meeting.

"At the same time, we discussed the operation on monitoring the Georgian borders by the Russian forces," he added.

"I consider the fact that we managed to discuss all these issues, including the controversial ones, as a positive development," the NATO Secretary General concluded.

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