Updated 2:45 p.m. Moscow Time
MOSCOW, October 1 (RIA Novosti) – Moscow may consider convening a Russia-NATO Сouncil after the alliance’s new Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg takes office, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Meshkov said in an interview with RIA Novosti on Wednesday.
“It would be strange to meet with the outgoing NATO Secretary General. Besides, he has long been acting as some sort of a politician, not as a leader of a military and political organization. Today the new NATO Secretary General takes office, so we will see,” he said.
NATO-Russia Council is a consultation mechanism between Russia and the military alliance established in 2002. NATO Deputy Secretary-General Alexander Vershbow expressed doubts earlier this year that NATO-Russia Council should convene, citing Russia's alleged role in the Ukrainian crisis as the reason.
Jens Stoltenberg, former Norwegian prime minister, took up his post as NATO Secretary General on Wednesday. Unlike his predecessor, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Stoltenberg has a more flexible approach toward relations with Russia. Stoltenberg has developed positive working relationship with Russian president Vladimir Putin during the time when he was the prime minister of Norway.