NATO to Russia: no business as usual

15:19, 19 August 2008
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26 NATO states have issued a joint declaration

NATO has said that it is “seriously considering” the implications of Russia’s actions in Georgia and that regular contacts were impossible until Russian troops had been fully withdrawn.

“We have determined that we cannot continue with business as usual,” the 26 NATO states said in a joint declaration after emergency talks in Brussels on the South Ossetia conflict.

Separately, they agreed to set up a new forum known as a NATO-Georgia Commission to strengthen ties with Tbilisi.

NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said the commission would function along similar lines to an 11-year-old arrangement with Ukraine but would not prejudge Georgia’s prospects of becoming a member of NATO.

Moscow strongly opposes countries on its borders joining what it regards as a hostile military alliance.


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