Sarkozy and Medvedev call for new European security pact

9th October 2008, Comments 0 comments

At an international conference in the southeastern French resort of Evian, Sarkozy called for a total reconstruction of the European security structure.

Paris -- French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, on Wednesday called for a new pan-European security structure.

At an international conference in the southeastern French resort of Evian, Sarkozy called for a total reconstruction of the European security structure.

Sarkozy also proposed a summit meeting of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to be held at the end of 2009 "to discuss (Russian) proposals and those of the European Union for new concepts of a pan-European defense."

For his part, Medvedev urged the convening of a "special forum" at which the "the leaders of all European states and the leaders of key organizations in the Euro-Atlantic area could take part."

The object of the forum would be to discuss the new European Security Treaty, which Medvedev first suggested to German Chancellor Angela Merkel in June, and which he elaborated in Evian.

"The Euro-Atlantic area needs a positive agenda today," Medvedev said. "The events in the Caucasus have merely confirmed the absolute correctness of the idea of a new European Security Treaty."

The Russian president said his proposed treaty consisted of five parts, including "a clear affirmation of the inadmissibility of the use of force -- or the threat of force -- in international relations."

Another clause would assert that "no single state or international organization may have the exclusive right to maintain peace and stability in the region. This applies fully to Russia too."

Sarkozy was receptive to the idea, saying, "We are ready to talk about it with the Russians because security in Europe and beyond is a common good."

Medvedev also used the occasion to protest against the expansion of NATO to near Russia's borders.

"The Alliance is moving its military infrastructure right up to our country's borders, and drawing new 'dividing lines' in Europe, right along our Western and Southern borders," he said. "Quite naturally, no matter what is being said, we regard these actions as directed against us."

However, he said that Moscow's intentions were peaceful.

"We are absolutely not interested in confrontation. Russia's successful development is possible only in conditions of transparent and equal international relations. And this is the guarantee of the stability of the world," Medvedev said.

DPA/Expatica

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