Top NATO official visits Russia
On 13-14 February 2012, Ambassador Kolinda Grabar, NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy paid a working visit to Moscow.
On Monday 13 February the Ambassador delivered a keynote speech on NATO-Russia relations at the opening of the annual Winter Academy in Abramtsevo ahead of the NATO Chicago Summit to be held in May. Later in the day she met with students and lecturers of the Russian Diplomatic Academy and engaged in a wide-ranging discussion with the assembled audience. Ambassador Grabar answered many questions related to NATO’s policies and operations, including the relationship between the Alliance and the Russian Federation.
The following day, Ambassador Grabar held consultations with the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister, Mr. Sergei Ryabkov. The exchange of views focused on the key topics of current NATO-Russia Council (NRC) agenda, such as missile defence, Afghanistan, public perceptions of NATO in Russia and the upcoming Summit in Chicago.
While in Moscow, Ambassador Grabar also had an opportunity to visit the NATO Information Office (NIO) and to meet a number of allied representatives and Russian experts in the field of international security.
On leaving Moscow, the Ambassador said that her few days in the city were “… very productive and interesting. The freezing winter temperatures which greeted me in Russia were offset by the hospitality of my Russian hosts and the warmth of discussions here. I am leaving the capital of Russia with an even greater conviction that – in spite of some existing divergences which need to be tackled – NATO-Russia partnership has a solid foundation and a promising future.”