06:45 GMT +313 December 2017
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    US Vice President Mike Pence delivers a speech next to Estonia's President Kersti Kaljulaid as they visit NATO's Enhanced Forward Presence mission and Estonian troops in Tallinn, Estonia July 31, 2017.

    Pence's Visit to Georgia, Estonia: Moscow Concerned Only With NATO Expansion

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    The Kremlin is at ease with US Vice President Mike Pence's visit to Georgia and Estonia, remaining concerned only with the expansion of various alliances and military infrastructure of these alliances towards Russian borders.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, commenting on a visit by US Vice President Michael Pence to Georgia and Estonia, said Tuesday that Russia had no issues with it.

    "These are sovereign countries, which, of course, build relations with international partners at their discretion, there can not be any problem," Peskov said.

    Such interaction may cause concern if it is associated with the expansion of the Alliance toward Russia's borders, the spokesman noted.

    "Such interaction becomes a problem for us when it entails the expansion of various alliances and military infrastructure of these alliances toward our borders. This causes our concern… Undoubtedly, we respect the relations of our neighboring states with the United States and other countries of the world," Peskov explained.

    According to Peskov, Pence's statement on Russia's actions in response to the US sanctions has nothing to do with the issues of the international security.

    "This decision has nothing to do with security, so I would not comment on the vice president's statement. I do not see any connection," the spokesman said, commenting on Pence's statement that Moscow's recent diplomatic actions would not affect the US commitment to its security, the security of its allies and freedom-loving countries around the world.

    Moscow announced last week countermeasures to respond to the US anti-Russia sanctions bill and expulsion of 35 Russian diplomatic staff from the United States and seizure of two Russian diplomatic compounds in the United States in late 2016.

    Pence on Monday accused Russia of alleged aggression toward the Baltic states and expressed the United States’ readiness to protect the countries under its NATO commitments.

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    Mike Pence, Georgia, United States, Russia, Estonia
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