European Union External Action

NATO: Remarks by High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell upon arrival at the NATO Ministerial meeting

Brussels, 24/03/2021 - 11:02, UNIQUE ID: 210324_5

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We are going to have a very important meeting today about Russia. I am happy to participate in this discussion, because the unity of the European [Union] Member States has to go beyond the European Union, together with our partners and NATO [North Atlantic Treaty Organization].
Russia is drifting away from the European values. It is becoming more and more an authoritarian country: the [Alexei] Navalny case, cyber-attacks, disinformation, the non-fulfillment of the Minsk agreement.
The European Union has to react to. We have done it. We have taken sanctions against high-level Russian officials for these issues and we have to continue working on the framework of the five guiding principles to define the unity of the Europeans and our NATO partners.
At the same time, we have to look for communication channels with Russia. Russia is a neighbour, a dangerous neighbour, but we have to share with them some issues in which we have common interests, like the nuclear agreement with Iran [the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] or climate change.

But, above all that, we have to contain Russia, to push back Russia when it infringes international law and it is very important to do it in the framework of our partnership with NATO.