Russia Invites NATO Officials to Conference in Moscow

On Aug. 1 Russia’s Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov announced that military officials from NATO have been invited to a September meeting in Moscow to discuss the military-political situation in Europe, Sputnik reported. The issue of preventing any incidents in the air or on the sea is high on the agenda, he said, as is the fight against the Islamic State and other terrorist organizations. He emphasized Russia’s willingness to ensure that all military flights over the Baltic region take place with transponders on, a subject that was also discussed July 29, at a briefing for all foreign military attachés stationed in Moscow.
At that same July 29 meeting, Atonov explained, attachés were briefed on the results of the July 13 meeting of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC). {Russia Beyond the Headlines} reported Aug. 1 that at the NRC meeting, Russia proposed a “positive program” for improving relations with NATO, based on abating tensions and preventing “military incidents on the contact line between the sides’ armed forces.” Within the NRC format, he said, the Russia-NATO Cooperative Airspace Initiative (CAI) can be an important means of “promoting the safety of aviation flights.”
Antonov underscored that Moscow is prepared to carry out joint incident-prevention work, based on existing bilateral agreements and consulting with the Defense Ministers of Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, Sweden, and Finland “to address mutual concerns related to military activities in the near-border areas.”
The Deputy Defense Minister also reported that Russia’s Defense Ministry is carrying out a “meticulous” evaluation of decisions made at the last NATO summit in Warsaw.

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