The philosophy of NATO is based not only on deterrence but also on the reduction of tension, and therefore should be targeted for the restoration of trust with Moscow, said in an interview to the Lithuanian Agency BNS, the head of German foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier.
“We need a dialogue with Russia, to regain the lost confidence and minimise the threat of accidental falling into the spiral of escalation”, — he said, commenting on the imminent deployment in the Baltic States rapid reaction forces of the Alliance.
The Minister also reminded that to reach agreement on the extension of sanctions against Russia became more difficult due to growing opposition to this step on the part of some members of the European Union. “We know that in the EU increased resistance to extension of sanctions against Russia,” he said.
“On the issue to agree on a common position will be more difficult than last year”, — said the Minister. He stressed that Germany wants to maintain the restrictive measures until full implementation of the Minsk agreements.
Their doubts about the need to extend the sanctions previously expressed Italy, Greece, Cyprus, Hungary and Bulgaria. For their unconditional extension supported by the UK, Sweden, Poland and the three Baltic republics. German Chancellor Angela Merkel also supported the extension of sanctions.