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NATO is not looking for confrontation with Russia, the State Department says

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY) – NATO is not looking for confrontation with Russia and is open to dialogue, the official representative of the US State Department, Vanessa Akker, told on the air of the Latvian radio station Baltkom.

She noted that the new US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, immediately after his appointment arrived in Brussels, where he had already discussed the problems of relations with Russia with the foreign ministers of NATO countries.

“Pompeo is a very experienced person, he has been a public person for many years before, he was a congressman and, incidentally, was in Latvia a year and a half ago.” With Russia, of course, there are very tense relations. Secretary of State Pompeo and the Foreign Ministers of NATO countries confirmed that NATO-Russia relations do not normalize until Russia implements the Minsk agreements, while NATO does not seek confrontation with Russia, we repeatedly stressed that we are open to dialogue with Russia” he said in an interview with radio station Akker.

Earlier Pompeo, who participated in the meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Brussels, said at the final press conference about the threat from the Russian side to Washington’s allies, pointing to Russia’s actions in Ukraine and Georgia, as well as an “aggressive campaign” to “undermine” democratic institutions in the West.

Yury Shvytkin, deputy chairman of the State Duma defense committee, commenting on Pompeo’s statement to RIA Novosti, said that there are no threats from Russia to Washington’s allies.

The authorities of Ukraine in April 2014 launched a military operation against self-proclaimed LNR and the People’s Democratic Republic of Ukraine, which declared independence after a coup d’etat in Ukraine in February 2014. According to the latest UN data, more than 10,000 people became victims of the conflict. The issue of settling the situation in the Donbass is discussed, in particular, during the meetings in Minsk of the contact group, which since September, 2014 has already adopted three documents regulating the steps to de-escalate the conflict. However, after the armistice agreements between the parties to the conflict, shootings continue.

Kiev repeatedly accused Moscow of interfering in the affairs of Ukraine. Russia denies this and calls such accusations unacceptable. Moscow has also repeatedly stated that it is not a party to the conflict in Ukraine and the subject of the Minsk settlement agreements.