Fifteen European countries have joined Germany in its attempt to adopt a new agreement on arms control with Russia. This was stated in an interview with Die Welt , foreign Minister of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier, a consistent supporter of dialogue with Russia in opposition to the policy of sanctions and isolation. After the collapse of the agreements on Syria’s initiative causes skepticism in the United States.

Steinmeier insists that the dialogue will help to prevent the escalation of the arms race after Russia’s actions in Crimea and Eastern Ukraine. “European security is at risk… given the difficulties in relations with Russia, we need to increase dialogue, not to cut”, – quotes Minister Reuters. The Agency reminds that Steinmeier is the candidate for President of Germany in future elections.

Steinmeier has put forward the idea of a new agreement on arms control in Europe in August. Since the initiative was supported by more than a dozen members of the OSCE, indicates Reuters. Among them France, Italy, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Spain, Portugal, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and others.

On Friday a group of countries planning to release a General statement, and on December 8-9 the meeting at the Ministerial level in Hamburg will discuss this agreement and the reaction to it.

Reuters reminds that Steinmeier condemns the annexation of Crimea to Russia, which in Europe is considered the annexation and support for separatists in Eastern Ukraine. He stressed that such actions undermine trust in Europe and the efforts on building relationships for the past dozen years, and threaten to unleash a new arms race.

In his opinion, the new agreement on arms control is able to prevent the dangerous development of events. “We are responsible for the use of every opportunity to increase the safety (on the continent)”, – he said in an interview.

Reuters notes that us officials perceive the initiative by Germany with skepticism, pointing to the disdain with which Russia relates to existing contracts and commitments. Steinmeier also criticized NATO for his calls to reduce the activity of the Alliance in Eastern Europe and not to hold there teachings that threaten to further aggravate relations with Russia.

The German social Democrats, which is Steinmeier, in General, supporters of a more conciliatory policy towards Russia than Chancellor Angela Merkel and her “Christian democratic Union”. Last week Merkel announced his intention to run for a fourth term.

Reuters indicates that during the election campaign German politics will have to consider a possible change in the balance of security in connection with the coming to power in the United States Donald trump. During his election campaign he repeatedly stated that NATO allies must pay more money for the support of the us army and threatened to reduce participation in the Alliance, which costs US too much.

23 Nov Steinmeier announced a meeting of foreign Ministers “channel four” (Russia, Germany, France, Ukraine) in Minsk – she has to go 29 Nov.

Last week the outgoing President Barack Obama during his recent foreign tour have agreed to extend sanctions against Russia.



15 European countries calling for a new agreement on arms control with Russia 25.11.2016

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