“We do not negotiate with Russia the right of sovereign countries to choose the course. The message is valid both in the case of Ukraine and of the Republic of Moldova,” said NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoană. According to the official, the North Atlantic Alliance does not support the idea of returning to the period of spheres of influence and Moscow is openly told this. Mircea Geoană noted that NATO respects the neutrality status of the Republic of Moldova, but will provide assistance to the country whenever such requests are made, IPN reports.
The NATO Deputy Secretary General noted that there is place for dialogue with Russia yet and voiced hope that diplomacy and the power of arguments will ensure peace on the European continent. Mircea Geoană also provided details about the letter sent by NATO to the Russian side.
“First of all, we specified what cannot be negotiated, namely the sovereign right of the countries in Europe to freely and democratically choose the course they want to assume. This does not refer exclusively to Ukraine. It refers also to the Republic of Moldova, which has a neutrality Constitution. The era of spheres of influence in Europe is over and NATO is not ready to return to such a period now or in the future,” Mircea Geoană stated in a program on PublikaTV channel.
The NATO official said the Republic of Moldova will always enjoy NATO’s support, if such requests are made, by observing the country’s neutrality status.
“NATO respects the Constitution of the Republic of Moldova, which is a neutrality Constitution, and we will help the Republic of Moldova there where support is requested. We do not pursue the policy of going to Moldova to persuade it do something that it does not want to do. That’s why we did many positive things in Moldova and get ready for a new cycle of individual partnership with the Republic of Moldova. We will assist Moldova in modernizing and strengthening the institutional capacities of this partner of ours. What preoccupies us is also the security dimension, even if we do not see imminent issues coming from Transnistria,” stated Mircea Geoană.
Two days ago, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg requested Russia to withdraw its troops from Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia. NATO called on Russia to refrain from aggressive force posturing and malign activities directed against Allies and other nations.