NATO-Russia Council meeting concludes the Bucharest Summit
The last event of NATO’s historic summit in Bucharest was a session of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC) held at the level of the Heads of State and Government. For the second time since the establishment of the NRC at the Rome Summit in 2002, President Vladimir Putin met with his Allied counterparts.
The chairman of the NRC, NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, described the very fact of holding such a session at the highest level as “a strong signal of our continued commitment to the spirit of the Rome summit.”
NRC leaders gave a positive assessment of the concrete practical achievements of the Council, pointing to numerous areas of practical cooperation, such as the fight against terrorism, civil emergency planning and Theatre Missile Defence (TMD).
Discussion also focused on many important topics of European and international security. The atmosphere of the session was friendly and constructive, and in this context, participants stressed the value of the NRC as an excellent forum for frank political dialogue. While there is a number of topics where the views of Russia and Allies clearly diverge – and today’s meeting confirmed this – a collective political will was expressed to use the NRC in search for appropriate solutions to existing problems.
Prior to the NRC meeting, the NATO Secretary General and the Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation, Mr. Sergei Lavrov, signed a document which will help to facilitate the land transit of non-military equipment destined for ISAF in Afghanistan, across the territory of the Russian Federation.