By Ivanov, Sergey B.
Hampton Roads International Security Quarterly , No. II
I would like to cover some of the most urgent aspects, from my point of view, of the modern status and prospects of development of the Russia' s cooperation with European countries in the interest of strategic stability and security.
Not trying to be eccentric, I would like to start with the statement that the European direction of the foreign policy is of the greatest priority for our country.
Despite its Euro-Asian geographical position, Russia has always been and remains a European power. It is Europe where we concentrate out key economic and political interests.
That explains why Russia is truly interested in tight and mutually beneficial relations with all its neighbors in Europe. At the same time we, Russians, can say that we feel similar tendency from the majority of the European states.
Today we have managed to reach a common understanding that the global risks require adequate responses, primarily through joint efforts of the entire world community.
Improvement of the political-diplomatic, economical and military instruments, which would guarantee parrying either regional or global threats, is on agenda.
Russia has been fully implementing all taken obligations under the Treaty on Strategic Offensive Potentials.
It is quite natural that Russia continues to develop its strategic forces of deterrence. However our efforts are aimed at their quality, not numbers. Test launches are going on within the framework of the current Treaties with all monitoring requirements fully implemented.
Another important instrument of peace and security is a system of control over non-proliferation of the weapon of mass destruction and deliveries of respective dual-use goods and technologies.
This system is based on multilateral treaties and agreements, effective and strict interstate control over export of products applicable for construction of weapon of mass destruction and means of its delivery, and national legislation meeting the requirements of the day.
Being a Chairman of the Intergovernmental Commission for export control of the Russian Federation, I can say that we have taken a number of serious steps in this direction. Particularly, the President of the Russian Federation has approved the fundamentals of state policy in the non- proliferation sphere. The Complex Program of Non-Proliferation of the WMD and Means of Its Delivery up to 2010 is underway. This Program defines the key directions of activity of the state structures in counterstanding the domestic and foreign threats in this sphere.
Preparation has been done for the amendments to the legislation aimed at more complete use of the export control abilities to solve non-proliferation tasks and combating international terrorism as well.
An open report covering our evaluation of the situation in the non-proliferation sphere, separate countries and regions included, and Russian approach to solving the key international problems in the mentioned sphere is being prepared for the upcoming G-8 summit.
We think there should be no exclusions for certain counterparts in implementation of international agreements. The international regimes of export control must not be used as a cover-up for unfair competition and ousting of competitors from the military market.
As a matter of fact the world may not turn more predictable and safe without really effective instrument of combating one of the most dangerous threats, that is international terrorism.
Unfortunately, we have to admit that this threat has not been reduced despite of active and more and more organized appropriate efforts of the world community.
This is proved by continuously tense situation in Iraq, certain restoration of terrorist potential of the groupings operating in Afghanistan, and continuous severe terrorist attacks in various parts of the world. …