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Russia/NATO talks in jeopardy

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Russia/NATO talks in jeopardy


Hopes of improved relations between the West and Russia since the election of President Obama are being threatened by planned NATO war games in Georgia. Moscow warned it will cancel talks with the alliance next month if NATO ignores its complaints. Military ties were suspended last summer after Moscow’s short war in Georgia. Relations were already frosty over proposed NATO membership for Georgia and Ukraine, although Washington has said it wants to press the re-set button and make a fresh start.

NATO has held war games in Georgia before, and said Russia was told 12 months ago about the latest exercises. Georgia is a crucial transit route for Caspian Sea oil and gas heading for Europe, but Moscow accuses NATO of overtly supporting the former Soviet state – part of what the Kremlin sees as its sphere of influence.

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