03:25 GMT +318 July 2019
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    A Turkish and an Union Jack flags are pictured at the NATO Headquarters in Brussels.

    Lavrov: Some NATO Members Justify Expansion by Claiming Russian Aggression

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    Certain NATO members try to justify alliance's expansion by claiming Russia's actions in Crimea are aggression.

    YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK (Sputnik) — Certain NATO members try to justify alliance's expansion by claiming Russia's actions in Crimea are aggression, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Wednesday.

    "I think that their [new NATO members'] historical position in regard to Russia is simply being used, trying to present of the Crimean people as our aggression, so that NATO can move closer to these borders," Lavrov told Zvezda television.

    The minister noted that while NATO has not taken on any legal obligations not to expand to the East, verbal promises have been made.

    "NATO wasn't just preserved, it started moving to the East. As you've probably red, there is a lot of discussion right now on whether the Soviet Union was promised, back when Germany was unified, and when Russia became Russia, that NATO would not be expanded to the East. There was a promise. We are currently looking through archived documents that we know of," Lavrov said.

    "It is not written down that they had no legal right to expand, that they had no right do deploy military infrastructure when they did begin to expand," the minister underscored.

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    NATO, Sergei Lavrov, Russia
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