Author`s name Alex Naumov

CFE treaty suspension not to lead to another Cold War

Russia 's moratorium suspending the country's participation in the Conventional Forces in Europe came into force immediately after midnight on Wednesday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the decree suspending Russia's participation in the Conventional Forces in Europe. The law was unanimously approved by the Russian parliament.

Pravda.Ru has interviewed James M. Goldgeier, former director of Russian affairs in the National Security Council under President Clinton, to find out the consequences of suspending Russia's participation in the Conventional Forces in Europe.

Pravda.Ru: Is there a possibility for NATO countries to ratify CFE Treaty now?

James Goldgeier: NATO has refused to ratify until Russia fulfills its obligations stemming from the 1999 Istanbul conditions seeking Russia to withdraw its troops from Moldova and Georgia.

Pravda.Ru: In what way may the USA react to it? Is there a possibility that the USA will boost their efforts to deploy missile shield in the Czech Republic and Poland?

James Goldgeier: These are separate issues. The US missile shield deployments have nothing to do with Russia -- they are a response to the potential threat from Iran. Those deployments are dependent both on the level of perceived threat from Iran and the willingness of the Czechs and Poles to allow the deployments.

Pravda.Ru: Can we say here that the world is heading towards another 'cold war'?

James Goldgeier: No, the Cold War was a conflict between two superpowers that dominated the world politically, militarily, economically, and ideologically. So we are not headed towards another Cold War.

The original Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) was negotiated and concluded during the last years of the Cold War and established comprehensive limits on key categories of conventional military equipment in Europe (from the Atlantic to the Urals) and mandated the destruction of excess weaponry. The treaty proposed equal limits for the two "groups of states-parties", NATO and the Warsaw Pact.

Prepared by Alexander Timoshik

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