Fifth Conference on International Security opens in Moscow
The Fifth Conference on International Security is being held in Moscow. 500 representatives of defense ministries, officials, experts, and scientists from 80 countries are participating in the forum this year. Discussions will be held on April 27-28. One of them is the Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan, having been invited by his Russian colleague Sergei Shoigu.
Earlier, Shoigu said that 17 defense ministers and 14 chiefs of staff will take part in the 2016 Conference on International Security. In addition, representatives of international organizations, two deputy secretaries-general of the UN, delegates from OSCE, CIS, the Arab League, CSTO and the International Committee of Red Cross have arrived in Moscow.
The Russian Deputy Defense Minister, Anatoly Antonov, said that terrorism will top the agenda of sessions on the Middle East, Europe, Asia Pacific and Central Asia, as the recent attacks in Europe showed that terrorism does not recognize state borders, RT reports.
The discussion at the conference will be focused on the anti-terrorism fight. Such topics as security in the Asian-Pacific region, situation in Europe, global security challenges and military cooperation are also due to be touched upon. Special attention will be devoted to the situation on the Middle East and Central Asia, Sputnik reports.
Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev announced the message that Russian President Vladimir Putin sent to participants and guests of the conference.
He noted that the forum organized by the Russian Ministry of Defense has firmly established itself as a platform for discussions on global and regional security over the past years, and also pointed out the importance of the fact that the conference is attended by representatives of defense ministries of different countries, heads of international organizations and authoritative experts.
"The main theme of the event is the fight against international terrorism which has challenged human civilization. This requires coordinated actions of the international community," Putin said in his address to the conference.
"To solve this problem we need to create a common international front under the auspices of the United Nations Organization. The Russian Air Force conducted powerful attacks against Daesh in Syria, providing the progress in the inter-Syrian dialogue, through which a political settlement of the conflict has became possible," the President's message says.
The Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu welcomed the participants of the conference and noted that "we discuss the most important issues at this event, which affect the security of the whole world".
"From the moment of our previous meeting the world has not become more stable, despite the joint efforts of Russia and other states. Combat fighting is under way and military bloc thinking is developing. There can be seen the persistent course of some countries towards dictating their will to the international community, using their military advantage," he said.
Projects of the global missile defense dangerous for the destinies of the world continue to be carried out, including with the use of precision non-nuclear weapons of the large operational radius comparable with nuclear weapons by their effect," the Russian defense minister stressed. "This undermines the already fragile architecture of international and regional security," he added.
"Terrorism has become the problem number one for all of us: it could be proved with the crash of Russian aircraft over Sinai, terrorist attacks in Europe, the situation in the Middle East, Afghanistan, Asia-Pacific and Central Asia," Shoigu stressed. "It is time for the international community to unite," he called on.
According to Shoigu, this could and should be done on the basis of the initiative of Russian President Vladimir Putin to create a common international front on the basis of international law and under the auspices of the United Nations Organization. "Any attempts to play with terrorists, to divide them on good and bad ones and moreover to arm them are not only short-sighted, but criminal," Shoigu noted.
“One of the common goals of the Russian Foreign Ministry is the fight against terrorism. Our priority is not to allow the expansion of terrorism into CIS countries," the head of the ministry said.
"A powerful blow was dealt to terrorism in Syria, their infrastructure was undermined, their training camps and ammunition depots were destroyed. The Syrian army liberated 500 settlements and over 5000 square kilometers of the territory with the help of the Russian aviation," he noted.
"We are consistently destroying the economic base of Daesh as their main source of income is oil smuggling. We are focusing on political settlement of the conflict, delivery of humanitarian aid to the population," the ministry said. According to him, "the liberation of Palmyra became the breaking point in an armed conflict".
The Russian Defense Minister positively assesses cooperation with US in Syria, recalling that he bilateral agreement on preventing air incidents is working. Shoigu stressed that Russia and US, as permanent members of UN Security Council, bear special responsibility. "Our countries should cooperate more closely and we are ready for that," he added.
"We are interested in our allies and partners to have compact, highly mobile armed forces, equipped with modern weapons and military vehicles that could effectively resist the challenges and the threats to the national security. The strengthening of the CSTO member states' borders meant strengthening of Russia's security," he said.
"Russian bases in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan are guarantees for regional stability. Together with our allies we are strengthening their combat abilities, which strengthen the security of Dushanbe and Bishkek,” Shoigu added.
The minister said that issues of European security will be discussed tomorrow. According to him, the situation in this area is sad. "Russia’s military cooperation with NATO countries and the European Union is frozen by no fault of ours," Shoigu said, noting that the Russia-NATO Council meeting on April 20 has not added any optimism.
"The US and NATO simultaneously started to build up military infrastructure close to our borders, are stepping up military spending. Such actions force us to take reasonable responsive measures. We are against any arms race. We are not against restoring relations with NATO, but this can only be done on the basis of reciprocity. We prefer to communicate at the negotiating table, not through gun sights," Shoigu pointed out.