Stop NATO News: February 20, 2012

20 February 2012012

  • Russia Vows Response To U.S.-NATO Global Missile Shield
  • Growth Of Conflicts Near Russian Border Demand Army Development
  • Obama Names High-Grade Enforced New Ambassador To Georgia
  • Afghanistan-Iran-Pakistan Summit: No Foreign Intervention In Region
  • Libyan Regime Deploys Army Amid Clashes In Southeast

Russia Vows Response To U.S.-NATO Global Missile Shield

http://english.ruvr.ru/2012_02_20/66444414/

Itar-Tass
February 19, 2012

Response to global missile defense – Putin

       
Russia’s Prime Minister and presidential candidate Vladimir Putin warns the U.S. of an effective and asymmetric response to deployment of a global missile defense system. ‘Russia’s military-technical response to the U.S. global missile defense system and its segment in Europe will be effective and asymmetric. And it will fully correspond to the U.S. steps in the field of missile defense,’ said the head of government in an article published in’ Rossiyskaya Gazeta.’

‘We are prompted towards such actions by the U.S. and NATO policy on missile defense,’ he explained. According to the prime minister, ‘a safeguard against upsetting the global balance of power may be either the creation of one’s own very costly and as yet ineffective missile defense system, or, more productively, the ability to breach any missile defense system and protect Russia’s retaliatory potential.’

‘Our strategic nuclear forces and aerospace defense will be serving precisely this purpose. In this matter there cannot be ‘too much patriotism,’ stressed Putin.

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Growth Of Conflicts Near Russian Border Demand Army Development

http://www.itar-tass.com/en/c32/347039.html

Itar-Tass
February 20, 2012

Growth of conflicts near Russian borders demands army development

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‘Deliberate attempts are obvious to provoke…conflicts in the immediate proximity from the borders of Russia and our allies,’ Putin noted. ‘We witness that the basic principles of international law were devaluated and disrupted, particularly in international security,’ he pointed out.

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MOSCOW: Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin believes that only economic and diplomatic ways are not enough to counteract to the growth of conflicts near Russian borders.

In his article devoted to the problems of national security and published in the Rossiiskaya Gazeta daily on Monday, the prime minister recalled about the growth of regional and local conflicts, the emergence of zones of instability and ‘an artificially fuelled, controlled chaos.’

‘Deliberate attempts are obvious to provoke such conflicts in the immediate proximity from the borders of Russia and our allies,’ Putin noted. ‘We witness that the basic principles of international law were devaluated and disrupted, particularly in international security,’ he pointed out.

‘In these conditions Russia cannot rely only on diplomatic and economic methods to lift disagreements and settle conflicts,’ the premier remarked.

‘Our country is facing the task of the development of military potential as part of deterrence strategy and at the level of defence sufficiency. The Armed Forces, security services and other power-wielding agencies should be ready for a quick and efficient response to new challenges,’ he said.

‘This is a compulsory condition for Russia to feel safe, and the arguments of the country will be taken by its partners in various international formats,’ the premier indicated.

Putin noted that ‘jointly with our allies we also should build up the capabilities of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), including the Collective Rapid Response Forces.

‘The CSTO is ready to fulfil its mission as a guarantor of stability in the Eurasian space,’ the prime minister noted,

Thus, Putin concluded, ‘The issues of ensuring the dynamic development of the Armed Forces, the nuclear and space industry, the defence and industrial sector, military education, fundamental military science and applied research programs should remain the top priority of Russian state policy for years to come.’

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Obama Names High-Grade Enforcer New Ambassador To Georgia

http://www.civil.ge/eng/article.php?id=24459

Civil Georgia
February 19, 2012

Obama Names New U.S. Ambassador to Georgia

Tbilisi: President Obama nominated on February 17 former ambassador to Uzbekistan Richard Norland as next U.S. ambassador to Georgia to replace John Bass, who has been serving in Tbilisi since late 2009.

Norland, a 32-year foreign service veteran, briefly served in Georgia in early 1990s in a capacity of the U.S. representative and acting head of the OSCE Mission to Georgia, working on the South Ossetia and Abkhazia conflict issues.

Before serving as ambassador in Uzbekistan in 2007-2010, Norland, who is now an international affairs advisor and deputy commandant at the National War College, Washington, D.C., was deputy chief of mission at the U.S. embassy in Kabul for two years.

According to the U.S. Department of State, Ambassador Norland has spent much of his career on U.S. relations with Russia and other former Soviet states. He was a political officer at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow in late 1980s.

He was director for European affairs at the National Security Council for two years during the Clinton and Bush administrations and served as deputy chief of mission in Latvia in 2003-2005.

Ambassador Norland, who speaks Russian, French, Norwegian and Latvian, was a political counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Dublin in 1995-1998.

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Afghanistan-Iran-Pakistan Summit: No Foreign Intervention In Region

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/indepth/2012-02/19/c_131418584.htm

Xinhua News Agency
February 19, 2012

Afghanistan-Iran-Pakistan summit opposes outside intervention in regional affairs

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The U.S., Qatar and Taliban have kept the Afghan government away from the talks, which prompted anger in Kabul. President Karzai reiterated in Islamabad his government’s earlier stand that the U.S. can not hold talks with Taliban on behalf of Afghanistan and that Kabul wants the Taliban office to be opened either in Saudi Arabia or Turkey.

Many in Pakistan endorse the notion of the Iranian president and consider the presence of the U.S. and forces of its Western allies as the root cause of instability and hostilities in the region. He rightly pointed out that regional problems should be resolved in the region and without foreign intervention.

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Islamabad: The Pakistani, Afghan and Iranian presidents at their trilateral summit in Islamabad on Friday came up with a categorical stance that regional issues should be resolved in the region and without any foreign intervention.

The three presidents in a joint communique reiterated their full support for an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned inclusive process of peace and reconciliation.

President Hamid Karzai, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and President Asif Ali Zardari in fact conveyed the message to U. S. officials, who have agreed on the opening of a Taliban office in Qatar and are holding ‘exploratory’ talks with Taliban in the Gulf state.

The U.S., Qatar and Taliban have kept the Afghan government away from the talks, which prompted anger in Kabul. President Karzai reiterated in Islamabad his government’s earlier stand that the U.S. can not hold talks with Taliban on behalf of Afghanistan and that Kabul wants the Taliban office to be opened either in Saudi Arabia or Turkey.

Pakistan, which has lost 35,000 civilians and security men since it has joined the U.S.-led coalition in 2001, also feels that it had been cornered by the U.S. contacts with the Afghan Taliban. The U.S. has always blamed Pakistan for helping the Afghan Taliban in their fight against NATO forces but now the U.S. is in talks with them in recent months.

In order to show its resentment to the U.S.’s mysterious interaction with the Taliban, Islamabad refused to welcome the American special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan who wanted to talk to the Pakistanis on the U.S. talks with the Taliban.

The Iranian president joined his Afghan and Pakistani counterparts at a time when the U.S and its European allies slapped more sanctions on his country.

The three presidents gathered in the Pakistani capital when anger at the U.S. runs high in the region.

A Pakistani columnist, Salim Safi, who routinely writes on Afghanistan, said that the trilateral summit in Islamabad was in fact a ‘protest sit-in’ against the Unites States.

‘The presidents of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan reiterated their full support for an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned inclusive process of peace and reconciliation. They assured the president of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan that they would extend full cooperation and stressed that any initiative in this regard must have authentic Afghan ownership,’ said a joint statement issued at the end of the trilateral summit.

Observers believe that it was a clear message to the U.S. attempt to hold secret interactions with the Taliban and to ignore the Afghan and Pakistani governments, regional and key Islamic countries as well as other Aghan groups in the dialogue process.

It is widely believed that the U.S. solo-flight has brought the Afghan and Pakistani presidents to ease their tension and sit together at the trilateral summit after a four-month deadlock in their relationship over the tragic assassination of Afghan peace envoy Burhanuddin Rabbani.

When the Afghan government suspended all high-level contacts with Pakistan after Rabbani’s murder and cancelled the planned visit to Kabul by Pakistani Prime Minster Yusuf Raza Gilani in October, the Iranian president proposed the trilateral summit in November, but the Afghan president had refused to come to Islamabad in view of the tense atmosphere in Kabul. Afghan officials had blamed Pakistani security agencies for helping the plot to kill Rabbani.

But the summit has now taken place with a commitment to strengthening cooperation for eradicating extremism, terrorism and militancy and to address the root causes of these menaces.

The three presidents also pledged to enhance cooperation among the countries comprehensively for realizing the shared aspiration of their peoples for peace, security, stability and economic prosperity.

The Iranian president used the opportunity to make it clear that there is no problem among the three states, and in a veiled reference to the U.S. he said that outsiders have imposed problems on the region.

Many in Pakistan endorse the notion of the Iranian president and consider the presence of the U.S. and forces of its Western allies as the root cause of instability and hostilities in the region. He rightly pointed out that regional problems should be resolved in the region and without foreign intervention.

Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari had also been categorical in resisting the U.S. pressure on the multi-billion Iran gas pipeline, which is key to resolving the fast growing energy crisis in the country.

The trilateral summit also vowed not to allow any threat emanating from their respective territories against each other and all parties agreed to commence trilateral consultations on an agreement in this regard. They agreed to prioritize cooperation for socio-economic development and to enhance three-way trade by facilitation measures, including preferential tariff and free trade arrangements as well as barter trade.

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Libyan Regime Deploys Army Amid Clashes In Southeast

http://www.portalangop.co.ao/motix/en_us/noticias/africa/2012/1/7/Libya-sends-army-stop-clashes-southeast,4d5ff6a9-de46-4855-8a9e-0d750929868c.html

AngolaPress
February 19, 2012

Libya sends army to stop clashes in southeast

Libya: Libya has sent military forces to stem clashes between rival tribes over control of territory in the far southeast of Libya, the armed forces chief said on Saturday, as more people were reported killed in the violence.

Clashes broke out late last week in the remote city of Al Kufra and have continued since, highlighting the challenge of policing the sparsely populated desert. Dozens of people have been killed, the tribes have said.

Libya’s ruling National Transitional Council has struggled to assert its authority across the whole of Libya as rival regional militias and tribal groups jostle for power and resources following the fall of Muammar Gaddafi.

Gunmen from the Zwai tribe have been clashing with fighters from the Tibu ethnic group led by Isa Abdel Majid, who they accuse of attacking Al Kufra backed by mercenaries from Chad, according to a security official from the Zwai tribe.

The Tibu, however, said they were the ones to come under attack.

In a text message to Reuters, Adelbari Idriss, a security official from the Zwai tribe, said two people were killed and seven injured in clashes in the city on Saturday. Separately, he said the Zwai had stopped two cars carrying Chadian men.

In Al Kufra, tribal ties are far more powerful than they are on the country’s Mediterranean seaboard. A tribal rebellion in 2009 was suppressed only after Gaddafi sent in helicopter gunships. The remote region is also a hub for smugglers taking advantage of the lawless borders of sub-Saharan Africa.

The province surrounding Al Kufra is Libya’s largest and borders Sudan and Chad. The roads in the region are poor, and some reports said the airport was out of use due to the fighting, possibly holding up any aid.

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Posted 20th February 2012 by InI in category NATO

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