A mechanical expansion of the North-Atlantic Alliance without taking Russia's national interests into account runs counter to objective needs in providing security. This is the opinion of Lyubov Sliska, first deputy chairman of the State Duma and head of the Duma permanent delegation in NATO Parliamentary Assembly, which she expressed Thursday at the session of bilateral working group Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation - Parliamentary Assembly of NATO. According to her, given "the threat of aggression left in the past, the expansion won't add security either to NATO or its new members, or especially Russia, but it may destroy much." Russia proceeds from the fact that NATO is a reality of current international life, however, it deems the plans of constructing European security architecture on the basis of existing military-political groups to be incorrect, the vice-speaker stressed. Meanwhile, Moscow intends to continue persuading NATO partners in inexpediency of further expansion of the alliance. Facing the threats of the modern world it is necessary to change NATO character and involve Russia to take part in its initiatives, Sliska believes. She noted that Russian parliamentarians have plans to devote a regular session of NATO Parliamentary Assembly committees and relevant committees of both houses of Russia's Federal Assembly to more detailed working out of certain aspects of Russia-NATO collaboration.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea
President Vladimir Putin has not released an official statement yet about his position on the issue of the pension reform in Russia