Russia concerned by US pulling neutral European states into NATO drills
Russia is hoping that the United States engaging neutral European countries in NATO military exercises, playing out a scenario of an attack on a NATO member, will not lead to further destabilization, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told an informal gathering of the OSCE’s heads of diplomatic agencies on Tuesday, TASS reports.
"We are carefully watching the boosting of the OSCE’s coordination with NATO, including the Americans drawing neutral states in drills, which are scripted to train the evoking of the fifth article of the Washington Treaty," he said. "I believe that this is not a very positive development. I hope it will not lead to further destabilization."
Lavrov urged the European partners to realize that "it is in their best interests to ensure maximum transparency of these processes [of boosting of the OSCE’s coordination with NATO], primarily on the OSCE forum."
In accordance with Article 5 of the Washington Treaty, an attack on a state, signatory to the Treaty, is considered as an act of aggression against all the NATO members.