The United States will not be able to openly declare to Russia about the ban on Ukraine and Georgia from joining NATO, but it can tacitly concede on a number of issues, political scientist Alexander Rahr believes. In his opinion, the very fact of a dialogue between Russia and the United States in Geneva speaks of a positive shift in bilateral relations, he shared on January 10 in a commentary to Izvestia.
“It’s good that the negotiations took place, that they lasted so long. I think both sides listened to each other. I think there are suggestions for further negotiations. The most important thing is that this process did not stop, people did not disperse, and this could be expected. Now the positive results of the talks can be judged only after the next stages of the Russia-NATO and Russia-OSCE negotiations. After this three-day marathon, where Russia is talking with the “great power” of the United States, with the main military organization of the West, NATO, with the OSCE, about adjusting security issues, we will have a result, “Rahr said.
The political scientist is sure that the sensational results of the talks will not be announced, besides, each of the parties will rely on its own ideas about the future of European security, about the vision of Russia in the West. The third meeting, in his opinion, will be the most interesting. A gain for Russian diplomacy will be the fact that the Americans will not talk about NATO expansion. If the question hangs in the air, then that’s good. Just as if there is no missile defense system on the Russian borders.
“But the process has begun, the parties began to listen to each other, there is an option that it will be possible to agree. (…) I think that America cannot publicly say that Ukraine and Georgia will have no place in NATO. But it may not say this and not take further steps towards admitting these countries to the Alliance. By the way, according to the NATO charter, Ukraine and Georgia cannot join this organization – they have a fragmented territory, they have ethnic and territorial conflicts <...> not publicly [США] will be able to make promises about ignorance of a full-scale war on the border with Russia. This would be a step forward. But what is more important is that this process does not end, these summits, ”explained Rahr.
According to the political scientist, the results of the negotiations should not be expected in the next few weeks or months, but significant progress can be achieved in a few years.
“The parade is commanded by the Americans in the West. Europeans howl in indignation: some out of anger, some out of frustration or the realization that they are not being asked. They are simply not connected to the negotiations. This is not good, not bad. (…) It is bad for Europeans because they are given to understand, everything is decided above their heads. But this is reality, ”says Rahr.
The talks between Russia and the United States on security guarantees were held in Geneva on January 10. They lasted approximately 7.5 hours. Discussions were held at the US Permanent Mission in Geneva in a format closed to the press. The Russian side was represented by Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov and Deputy Defense Minister Alexander Fomin. The American delegation was led by Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman.
Sergei Ryabkov, following the results of the Russian-American talks on security guarantees, stated that the issue of non-expansion of NATO is key for the national security of the Russian Federation, and the settlement of this topic cannot be postponed any further. He also stressed: Moscow needs guarantees that Ukraine and Georgia will never become members of the alliance. In addition, the diplomat noted that the Russian side “is tired of conducting empty talk,” and Moscow needs “reinforced concrete, legally significant guarantees.”