“We don’t want confrontation [with Russia], we don’t want a new Cold War, so we are keeping the chance for political dialogue open with Russia,” Stoltenberg said at a press conference in Brussels.
At the same time, he stressed that NATO supported the message of the new US administration that this dialogue should be “based on strength.”
“We agreed in Warsaw at our summit that we need strong defense but also political dialogue with Russia and I look forward to work together with the new president and his security team on how to implement … that message,” Stoltenberg said.
NATO-Russia relations were established in 1991. In 2002, the cooperation was strengthened by establishment of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC), which became a platform for consultations on security issues and cooperation in various spheres. The relations between the alliance and Russia deteriorated in 2014 after the Crimea held a referendum and joined Russia. The West accused Russia of military aggression in Ukraine, which Moscow has repeatedly denied.