NATO, Russia go head to head over Georgia

(dpa) - NATO and Russian diplomats clashed on Tuesday over the recent conflict in would-be NATO member Georgia, as Russia accused NATO of Cold War thinking and NATO challenged Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to pull his troops out of Georgia.

NATO "is not going to permit a new line to be drawn in Europe ... It's time for the Russian president to keep his word to withdraw back to the status quo ante of August 6-7," before fighting in the Georgian breakaway region of South Ossetia broke out, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said after a meeting with NATO counterparts.

"What is a promise worth when it is not fulfilled?" NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer added, again referring to an EU-brokered ceasefire deal signed by Medvedev on August 12. NATO officials say Russia is breaking the truce.

At the emergency meeting, the foreign ministers of NATO's 26 member states agreed not to hold any more sessions of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC, the main platform for NATO-Russia dialogue) until Russian troops pull out of Georgia, and decided to create a new commission for dialogue with membership hopeful Georgia.

"Russian military action has been disproportionate and inconsistent with its peacekeeping role, as well as incompatible with the principles of peaceful conflict resolution. ... We cannot continue with business as usual," a joint statement after the meeting said.

But Russia's ambassador to NATO, Dmitry Rogozin, hit back strongly, accusing the US of helping Georgia plan its attack on South Ossetia, de Hoop Scheffer of acting as a US pawn and NATO as a whole of keeping a Cold War mentality.

"Today NATO demonstrated that it originated in and it is still from the time of the Cold War, it doesn't matter what their propaganda says," he said.

"(Georgian President Mikheil) Saakashvili got the right to start a war against the small people of South Ossetia just because Georgia had NATO aspirations," he added. Saakashvili is a war criminal with as little right to join NATO as Hitler or Saddam Hussein, he said.

"The US was greatly involved in the preparation of this Georgian aggression ... and here in Brussels they were afraid to engage in a frank discussion with Russia in the presence of their European allies," he said.

In April, NATO leaders agreed that Georgia and Ukraine should join the alliance at an unspecified future point. The alliance's foreign ministers are set to discuss the issue further in December.

But immediately after the decision, which Russia criticized as a threat to its security, tensions between Georgia and its breakaway provinces flared dramatically. The tensions culminated in a Georgian attack on South Ossetia on August 7 and a Russian military response which pushed well into Georgian territory.

French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, who engaged in shuttle diplomacy to bring about a ceasefire, said Tuesday that "if the European Union had not moved, Tbilisi would have been captured."

Rogozin rejected that claim, saying that " Russia's actions were never intended to destroy, occupy or force regime change in Georgia."

And while de Hoop Scheffer said that NATO would not call any further NRC meetings until Russia pulls its troops out of Georgia, Rogozin retorted that it would be up to NATO to return to talks.

"We will keep our very good bilateral contacts (with NATO members) ... and hopefully there will be a better time sooner or later when NATO understands that the world is very vulnerable and that bloc approaches are no longer possible," he said.

He also insisted that the row was not about to plumb the depths it saw during the Cold War.

"It's clear ( Russia's relationship with NATO) won't stay as it was before, there will be a lot of changes in the volume, quality and time-frame of our meetings. This situation will change but there will be no Cold War," he said.

Subscribe to Trend in Google News! Subscribe
S&P comments on possible swap line between Central Banks of Azerbaijan and Turkey
S&P comments on possible swap line between Central Banks of Azerbaijan and Turkey
Iran resumes gas export to Turkey
Iran resumes gas export to Turkey
Iran says gas flows to Turkey resume after being cut due to technical fault
Iran says gas flows to Turkey resume after being cut due to technical fault
Loading Bars
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin price dips
India now allows 6 people to register on one number for Covid vaccination
Azerbaijan changes rules for quarantine control of Covid-19
India's Karnataka approves design & launch of nano-satellite by govt school students at Rs 1.9 Cr
‘One Modi cannot change a country, need more icons like him’: Himanta Biswa Sarma
Seizing of illegally stored weapons from citizens continues in Kazakhstan - interior minister
Azerbaijani border serviceman commits suicide in military hospital
Iran unveils details of agricultural export
Kazakh Armed Forces performing tasks to ensure public order in regions with “red” level of terrorist threat
Tokyo hits record 10,000 COVID cases, Japan over 50,000 for first time
Number of COVID-19 infections in Russia surpasses 11 mln since pandemic began
Kazakhstan developing measures to reform Samruk-Kazyna Fund's activities
PMO records surge in load/unload operations at Iranian ports
S&P predicts gas production growth in Azerbaijan through 2025
Turkmen medical enterprise discloses production data
Azerbaijan to hold auction for Ferrum Kapital CJSC's bonds
Kazakh president talks need to continue work to reveal all circumstances of recent riots
Kazakh oil and gas company to purchase helium via tender
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for January 22
Oil price spikes likely in 2022 amid inventory tightness midyear
7 killed, 16 injured in massive fire in central Mumbai high-rise
Oil demand to be robust in coming years despite net-zero strategies
India reports 3,37,704 new Covid cases, 488 deaths in 24 hours
Number of COVID-19 infections in Russia surpasses 11 mln since pandemic began
OPEC+ focus to switch away from propping up prices
Iran shares data on buy/sell operations at its Mercantile Exchange
Most people feel I-T exemption limit could be raised from Rs 2.5 lakh: India's KPMG
Turkmenistan’s Balkandokma complex doubles cotton yarn sales
Uzbekistan reveals data on agricultural, forestry and fisheries production
Tax benefits to increase disposable income likely in India's Union Budget
Uzbekistan approves procedure for rational use of land resources
S&P discloses inflation forecast for Azerbaijan through 2025
S&P Global Ratings announces forecast for Azerbaijan's budget surplus
Magnitude 6.2 earthquake strikes Unalaska, Alaska
NIOC agrees with Russian companies to develop Iran's oil, gas fields
SOCAR dismisses information about purchasing bitumen plant in Armenia
Kazakh company eyes to import leather products from Uzbekistan
S&P comments on possible swap line between Central Banks of Azerbaijan and Turkey
Oil production in Azerbaijan to moderately rebound - S&P
Georgia discloses its main cement sources of import
Turkmenistan lays out plans for hydrogen energy development
US lawmakers seek litigation at WTO against India on wheat subsidy
Iran, Azerbaijan continue construction of Khudafarin and Giz Galasi hydro junctions (PHOTO)
Climate policy of Uzbekistan: Implementation of measures to prevent climate change and adaptation in most vulnerable sectors of economy
S&P Global Ratings approves Azerbaijan's credit rating at 'BB+/B'
UK Foreign Secretary to meet with Lavrov in Moscow in February
Netaji’s statue at India Gate to be 25 feet high: NMAG director
India to allow arms manufacturers to enhance production
Kazakhstan names Samruk-Kazyna's entreprises planned to be put up for IPOs
Iranian currency rates for January 22
Statistical center of Iran reveals figures of growing inflation
Azerbaijan reduces quarantine period for COVID-19 patients
Kazakh Gas Processing Plant opens tender on manufacturing of parts for pumping equipment
Azerbaijan's Kalbajar - most suitable for winter tourism among liberated areas, agency says
EAM Jaishankar dials envoys in US, Canada after 4 Indians freeze to death along US-Canada border
Balkan Shipbuilding Yard in Turkmenistan to build new ships
Uzbekistan shares domestic COVID-19 data for Jan.21
Azerbaijani oil prices decline
Azerbaijan talks probability of commercial oil & gas reserves at Aypara area in Caspian Sea
GM sets $6.5 bln for in Michigan electric vehicle plants -document
Georgia – Turkey trade turnover up
Subhas Chandra Bose's family members welcome PM's decision on Netaji's statue at India Gate
Kazakhstan talks business support measures related to tax legislation
Iran resumes gas export to Turkey
Central Bank of Azerbaijan fully meets demand at foreign exchange auction
US commits to helping Saudi Arabia, Gulf partners defend against threats from Yemen
NYPD officer killed, another seriously wounded in shooting
Poland, Georgia to hold Joint Intergovernmental Commission meeting – ministry
Saudi-led coalition denies targeting detention centre in Yemen's Saada
Arnold Schwarzenegger involved in car accident
Germany's minimum wage hike will not cost jobs - labour minister
Canadian tourist killed, 2 others wounded in Mexico resort shooting
Iran says gas flows to Turkey resume after being cut due to technical fault
Student shot at Maryland school, suspect in custody
France: Former aides to ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy jailed for opinion poll fraud
WHO recommends reduced dose Pfizer COVID vaccine for under 12s
Islamic State jailbreak in Syria, army barracks attack in Iraq leave at least 39 dead
U.N. chief condemns deadly Saudi-led coalition strike in Yemen
Amirabdollahian: new chapter in Iran-Russia ties to unfold
Trade turnover between Uzbekistan and Azerbaijan increases
Dozens killed in Saudi-led coalition air raid on Yemen prison
Price of fuel and lubricants in Kyrgyzstan increased by 70% over past year
Airbus cancels Qatar Airways order in escalating dispute
Turkey wraps up in-person semester with success against pandemic
Azerbaijan may toughen punishment for domestic violence
Azerbaijani Xalq Bank's profits increase
Azerbaijan names most profitable non-oil fields in terms of tax revenue growth
Kazakh oil and gas company to purchase variable speed drives
Кazakh Electricity Grid Operating Company opens tender to buy hydraulic press
Turkmenistan-Belarus trade turnover fell in 11M2021
Crime rate in Azerbaijani Armed Forces decreases - military prosecutor general
Size of consumer market in Azerbaijan increases - minister
Price indexes of financial, trade sectors at Uzbek stock exchange rise
Government focuses on subsidizing production rather than import – Azerbaijani Cabinet of Ministers
Azerbaijan is one of countries with best conditions for training - Australian gymnast
Azerbaijan's parliament discusses lifting of visa regime with Serbia
European Azerbaijan School hosts return of World Scholar's Cup to Baku (PHOTO)
Uzbekistan and Oman eye joint projects in transport sector
Schlumberger's profit jumps as higher oil prices spur drilling demand
Kazakhstan to strictly fulfill all investment obligations - President Tokayev
All news