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Russia-NATO Council 'could restart this month'

RIA Novosti

04/03/2009 17:50 BRUSSELS, March 4 (RIA Novosti) - The work of the Russia-NATO Council, frozen after the war with Georgia last August, could resume later this month, the Russian envoy to the military alliance said on Wednesday.

"I expect a formal Russia-NATO Council meeting to be held during March," Dmitry Rogozin said.

A NATO spokesman said earlier today that Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer hopes a March 5 NATO foreign ministerial meeting will decide to resume the work of the Russia-NATO Council.

Rogozin said a council meeting on the defense and foreign ministerial level could take place in May or June.

He also said that the "period of estrangement" in Russia-NATO relations is "largely behind us."

Rogozin took part in an informal meeting of the NATO-Russia Council in Brussels last Wednesday, the second meeting between the Russian representative and 26 NATO envoys since ties were frozen following the Russia-Georgia conflict.

The Russian envoy earlier said Scheffer had been invited to attend a Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Moscow on March 27, which would discuss, among other things, the situation in Afghanistan and its impact on neighboring countries.


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