Putin Weighs In, Asserts U.S. and NATO Ignoring ‘Inalienable’ Principle of Security Amongst Nations
Feb. 1, 2022 (EIRNS)—Today, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, after weeks of silence on the subject, made a measured public statement, calling out the U.S. and NATO for deliberately ignoring Russia’s clearly expressed fundamental security concerns. After his meeting with Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, Putin informed the media: “Let me note that we are closely analyzing the written responses received from the U.S. and NATO on Jan. 26. However, it is already clear, and I informed Mr. Prime Minister about it, that the fundamental Russian concerns were ignored.”
The three fundamental concerns are to stop the Eastern expansion of NATO; to prevent offensive weapons near Russian borders; and for NATO to return to the military infrastructure of the 1997 agreements. However, Washington focuses upon the right to choose security alliances, while disregarding another key principle of the indivisibility of security. “The second inalienable part says that no one should be allowed to strengthen their security at the expense of the security of the other states,” TASS quoted the President as saying.
Putin explained that NATO “took advantage” of Russia, after having promised not to deploy east of the Oder River, in deploying forces close to its border, in Poland, the Baltic states, and Romania. Now, Tomahawk cruise missiles can be launched from “defense systems” in Poland and Romania. Also, while Ukraine wants to join NATO, yet it has an official, documented doctrine to retake Crimea, “including through military means.” Does NATO want to commit to such adventures? “I hope we will ultimately find a solution. Although it will be quite hard to do, we are fully aware of that. But today I am not ready to say what it can be.”
Putin remarked that the discussion with Orbán lasted five hours: “Naturally, the issues relating to the Ukrainian conflict were addressed. [We discussed] the overall situation in Ukraine, including the sphere of human rights, which are violated on a regular basis there.” According to TASS, Putin also said that the Hungarian partners were making some strenuous attempts to settle the Ukrainian crisis. Putin also reflected on the “large projects, such as Paks—two new units, the construction of a nuclear power plant. In general, energy is a big part of our cooperation: 55% of oil and 80% of natural gas consumed by Hungary come from Russia.” He announced long-term contracts with Hungary, giving them discounted gas until 2036, pointing out that Hungary’s present gas price from Russia is one-fifth that of the European market rate. Another project he mentioned is a “good joint contract to build carriages for Egypt.”