Opinion - Nato not ready to serious talk on European security

MOSCOW, December 3 (Itar-Tass) - A high-ranking Russian military official said on Friday NATO was not ready for a serious discussion of European security issues.

"Fairly good interaction at a tactical level in Kosovo was established" between Russia and NATO, but strategically, "our approaches are different and diametrically (different) on some issues," said the head of the Defence Ministry international department, Colonel-General Leonid Ivashov.

"Nowadays, Kosovo is a stage in our relations, on whose success on non-success our future relations with the NATO bloc depend," Ivashov said.

Russia is now co-operating with NATO only on Kosovo, there are no other lines of affinity, and "we have not heard any serious proposals on Kosovo or on the way co-operation should be organised so far," according to him.

The alliance's leaders are offering "co-operation for co- operation", meanwhile "we regard we have a right to play on the European field, we are calling for a strong and stable Europe to be created with our participation," he said.

"Russia is calling not for the idea on NATO-centrism to prevail over the Europe of the 21st century, but for the idea of co-operation within the framework of the OSCE and with the participation of other European institutions," the general said.

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