Rice: NATO not to allow appearance of new line through Europe

09:41, 20 August 2008
World
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Between its members and those seeking membership

NATO will not allow a new line to be drawn between its members and those seeking membership of the alliance, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said here Tuesday.

Rice was speaking at a press conference after an extraordinary meeting of NATO foreign ministers on the situation in Georgia.

She said the statement issued at the meeting made it very clear that NATO "is not going to permit a new line to be drawn in Europe" between those who were fortunate enough to make it into the transatlantic structure and those who are still trying to join it.

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice holds a news conference during a NATO foreign ministers meeting at the Alliance headquarters in Brussels August 19, 2008.

Georgia and Ukraine will be members of the alliance, Rice said, adding that "a new line in Europe is unacceptable."

NATO will establish a NATO-Georgia Commission to assess the country`s military situation and oversee cooperative initiatives between the two sides.

Regarding Russia`s actions in Georgia, Rice said: "There was very strong language in the declaration and around the table."

"It is time for Russia to honor its ceasefire commitment" and "for its president (Dmitry Medvedev) to keep his word" to withdraw troops from Georgia, she said.

Xinhua

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