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NATO Deputy Secretary General rules out any negotiation of NATO military presence on member-state territory

Inquam Photos / Octav Ganea
mircea geoana

Deputy Secretary General of NATO Mircea Geoana has ruled out on Friday any possibility of negotiating the military presence of NATO on the territory of member-states, after Russia has requested all foreign troops, armaments and heavy military equipment be withdrawn from the countries that have joined the alliance after 1997, mentioning Romania and Bulgaria explicitly.

The list comprises 14 countries in the former communist bloc.

"Our answer has been and remains as clear and as transparent as before: there is no way to negotiate, to compromise the military posture of NATO on the territory of NATO countries. It's NATO's business where and in what configuration, depending on the security needs, we deploy our military presence in NATO countries," said the official on his Facebook page, Agerpres.ro informs.

The Foreign Ministry of the Russian Federation has announced on Friday that the security guarantees that Russia is trying to obtain from the West include the stopping of enlargement of the military bloc and its return to its 1997 borders, as well as the departure of NATO forces from countries that adhered after this year, among them Romania and Bulgaria.

"It's not the problem of the Russian Federation, just as we don't tell the Russian Federation where to place or not place its own forces in its own territory. What we are saying to the Russian Federation is that it is totally anachronistic and it is a return in historical time to complicated areas of European history - the idea that you can threaten with military incursion a neighboring, sovereign, independent and democratic state in Europe," added Mircea Geoana.

"This is truly the red line, not the one that the head of diplomacy in Moscow is saying," the NATO official insisted.

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