The NATO-Russia Council (NRC)

Published on - January 16, 2022

Bilateral Groupings & Agreements

Source: The Indian Express

CONTEXT:

At the NATO-Russia Council (NRC) meeting in Brussels, representatives from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and Russia reviewed the current situation in Ukraine and its implications for European security at the time.

The discussions between officials of NATO and Russia came to a close without a clear conclusion.

The Key Points

NATO-Russia Council (NRC): The NATO-Russia Council (NRC) was founded on May 28, 2002, at the NATO-Russia Summit in Rome (Rome Declaration).

It took over for the Permanent Joint Council (PJC), which had been established by the 1997 NATO-Russia Founding Act on Mutual Relations as a venue for dialogue and collaboration.

When it comes to security issues of common interest, the NATO-Russia Council (NRC) serves as a consultative forum for reaching consensus, cooperating, making decisions, and taking joint action. It brings together representatives from the individual NATO member states and Russia to work as equal partners on a wide range of security issues of common interest.

 

The following were some of the highlights of the meeting:

NATO has rejected Russia's call for a new security arrangement in Europe, and has challenged Russia to withdraw forces stationed near Ukraine and participate in negotiations aimed at lessening the prospect of open confrontation.

Ukraine serves as a vital deterrent against Russian aggression for the United States and the European Union. A naval station in Ochakiv and another in Berdyansk are also being constructed in Ukraine, something that Russia does not approve of.

Despite the prospect of economic penalties, the Western allies have received no assurances that Russia will withdraw its soldiers from Syria, which Moscow claims represent no threat to its already largely occupied neighbour.

Russia has asked that NATO not admit any additional members and that western military be withdrawn from its Eastern Allies' territory. According to the report, further deterioration might have "the most unforeseen and most grave ramifications for European security," if the situation continues.

There are considerable disparities between NATO countries and Russia, and bridging these divides will not be simple.

India's Position Towards Russia Ukraine Crisis:

India did not join the Western nations in denouncing Russia's action in Crimea, and instead chose to maintain a low profile on the matter in question.

During the United Nations General Assembly (GA) session in November 2020, India voted against a Ukraine-sponsored resolution condemning alleged human rights breaches in Crimea, so siding with long-time ally Russia on the subject.

 

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (also known as the Washington Treaty) was established in April 1949 by the United States, Canada, and several Western European countries to provide collective security against the Soviet Union. It is comprised of the United States, Canada, and several Western European countries.

One of the most important provisions of the treaty, known as Article 5, specifies that if one member of the alliance is attacked in Europe or North America, it is to be considered an attack on all members of the alliance. As a result, Western Europe was essentially placed under the "nuclear umbrella" of the United States.

As of 2019, the alliance consists of 29 member nations, with Montenegro being the most recent member to join in 2017.

The Best Way Forward

The resumption of the Minsk peace process would be a viable answer to the current situation. Consequently, the West (the United States and other western countries) should encourage both parties to continue discussions and fulfil their obligations under the Minsk accord in order to restore relative calm along the border.

To that end, the United States should seek agreement from all parties to participate more directly in an OSCE-mediated process to prevent the persistent harm to European security, the rising human and economic costs of conflict, and the threat to Ukraine's territorial integrity.