Russia Fulfils Its Commitments Under Conventional Forces In Europe Treaty

Russia has fulfilled in full measure its obligations on limiting its armaments and military hardware assumed in keeping with the agreement on adaptation of the Conventional Forces in Europe treaty, report official sources in Moscow. In line with the declaration of the Istanbul summit of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the final act of the conference of the CFE member-states, Russia has assumed a series of obligations. Specifically, by the end of 2001 Russia was to reduce, or destroy, its forces found in Moldova and falling under the limitations set by the treaty. Withdrawal of Russian forces from the territory of Moldova is to be over by the end of 2002. In line with the treaty's provisions, by the end of 2002 Russia also is to cut its forces in Georgia to a level not exceeding 153 tanks, 241 armoured cars and 140 artillery systems. Within the same timeframe, armaments were to be pulled out from the Vaziani and Gudauta bases and, prior to July 1, 2001, these bases were to be disbanded and removed. Within the set timeframe Russia had wholly fulfilled its commitments, stressed the official sources. They noted that groups of foreign observers could follow the process of withdrawal of our armaments from Georgia. No violations of the obligations assumed by Russia have been observed. Despite the complexity of the situation in the North Caucasus, said the Russian experts, Russia has also reached the flank force levels set by the treaty. For that some units have been removed from composition of the group of troops engaged in the conduct of an antiterrorist operation. Concrete data proving that the current amount of forces in the flank zone is in line with the parameters of the agreement have been handed over to all member-states of this agreement, stressed the experts. Thus, Russia's partners in the agreement have no reason for delay in the process of ratification of this document.

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