Moscow highlighted an increase in NATO activity in the South Caucasus at the Geneva International Discussions, emphasizing that Moscow cannot take this calmly, Russia’s State Secretary, Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin told TASS on Wednesday.
“There appeared information about new contracts, in particular about a $75-million deal on deliveries of cutting-edge anti-tank missile systems Javelin to Tbilisi,” Karasin said. “Moreover, Americans have repurposed the Georgian peacekeepers’ course to train regular units.”
“Both South Ossetia and Abkhazia are alarmed, and naturally, we cannot take it calmly,” he said. “We focused attention on this fact at the Geneva meeting.”
A regular round of Geneva International Discussions on security and stability in the South Caucasus has not brought about any agreement on the non-use of force in the region, he said.
NATO lied on eastward expansion
This comes as it emerges that US and Western European leaders lied when they repeatedly promised their Soviet and Russian counterparts in the early 1990s that NATO would not expand into Eastern Europe, according to a series of declassified documents posted by George Washington University’s National Security Archive on Tuesday.
NATO expansion was a key issue as US, Western European and Soviet leaders negotiated the reunification of Germany, in which the alliance’s boundaries would presumably encompass the former East Germany.
Russian officials, including President Vladimir Putin, have repeatedly stated that the US failed to uphold its promises, adding that the Ukranian conflict following the 2014 coup that installed a pro-Western government in Kiev has served as a pretext for additional deployments in Europe.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg recently said that the alliance would maintain increased presence in the Baltic states and Eastern Europe “as long as necessary”.