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    Estonia's President Toomas Hendrik Ilves

    Estonian President Urges NATO to Reconsider Act on Relations With Russia

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    Estonia’s President Toomas Hendrik Ilves urged NATO members to reconsider a 1997 Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security with Russia.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Estonia’s President Toomas Hendrik Ilves urged NATO members to reconsider a Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security with Russia signed in 1997 as it halts deployment of NATO forces on the territory of new member-states, official statement said Tuesday.

    At a joint meeting with German Defense Minister Ursula Von Der Leyen which took place in Tallinn Ilves said that in light of the conflict in Ukraine the Act has lost its significance.

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    “Due to the current state of [European] security, the Act signed in 1997 should not halt deployment of NATO’s permanent deterrent forces on the territory of the countries bordering with NATO,” Ilves said.

    Ilves added that NATO military presence in the Baltic region needs to be enhanced to boost the Baltic states’ defense against Russia.

    The NATO-Russia Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security defines mechanisms of consultation, cooperation, joint decision-making and joint action between the two countries.

    The political and military crisis in Ukraine prompted European countries to increase their military spending. In 2014, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland have boosted their military spending and sought to position themselves as serious contributors to NATO.


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