NATO Not Ready to Resume Defense Dialogue With Russia - Russian Envoy to NATO

© Jean-Christophe VerhaegenThis April 2, 2009 file photo shows shadows cast on a wall decorated with the NATO logo and flags of NATO countries in Strasbourg, eastern France, before the start of the NATO summit which marked the organisation's 60th anniversary.
This April 2, 2009 file photo shows shadows cast on a wall decorated with the NATO logo and flags of NATO countries in Strasbourg, eastern France, before the start of the NATO summit which marked the organisation's 60th anniversary. - Sputnik International
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NATO is not ready to resume fully-fledged dialogue on defense issues with Moscow, Russian envoy to NATO Alexander Grushko said Thursday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — During the last NATO summit in July, NATO resolved to strengthen its military presence in Eastern Europe on a rotational basis with four battalions in Poland and in the Baltic nations. During the 2014 summit, NATO established a 5,000-strong Very High Readiness Joint Task Force in response to the alleged Russian threat.

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"It is obvious that NATO is currently not ready to resume fully-fledged defense dialogue [with Russia]," Grushko said in an interview with Rossiya-24 television, adding that there were no indications that the Alliance would change its stance in foreseeable future.

Since 2014, NATO has been building up its military presence in Europe, especially in Eastern European countries neighboring Russia, using Moscow's alleged interference in the Ukrainian conflict as a pretext. Moscow has repeatedly denied the claims and warned NATO that the military buildup on Russia's borders is provocative and threatens the existing strategic balance of power.

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