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    A general view of the table for a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council at the level of defense ministers at NATO headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013

    Moscow-NATO Relationship Unable to Move Forward in Current State - Russian Envoy

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    Russia and NATO have come to the deadlock in their relations, Russia's envoy to NATO Alexander Grushko said Tuesday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Russia and NATO have ceased all cooperation and cannot move forward in their relations, Russia's envoy to NATO Alexander Grushko said Tuesday.

    "Unfortunately, if we are speaking about NATO, NATO has deliberately stopped all collaborative projects [with Russia], nothing is happening, there is nothing positive on the agenda and there is no way to move forward," Grushko said.

    The Russian envoy also said that with Russia and European countries facing similar challenges, there were still avenues for cooperation and progress.

    NATO has been boosting its military presence in Europe, particularly in Eastern European states, since the outbreak of the Ukrainian crisis, citing Russia's alleged interference in that conflict as justification for the move.

    Relations between Russia and the West deteriorated in 2014 after the overwhelming majority of the Crimean population voted in a referendum to leave Ukraine and rejoin Russia. In April 2014 Kiev authorities launched a military operation against pro-independence militia in Donbas. In February 2015, the two sides reached a ceasefire deal after talks brokered by the leaders of Russia, France, Germany and Ukraine — the so-called Normandy Format — in the Belarusian capital of Minsk.

    Moscow has repeatedly stressed that it is not a party to the Ukrainian conflict, and that military expansion toward Russia's borders increases tensions by threatening regional and international security.

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    relationships, conflict, relations, NATO, Alexander Grushko, Russia
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