Addressing the German Foreign Policy Society in Bonn yesterday, Estonian foreign minister Siim Kallas said that Western denials failed to dispel apprehension in newly independent countries that a redivision of Europe might be agreed upon with Russia. Any statement casting doubt on the Baltic states’ eventual accession to NATO as full members "only increases Russia’s perception that the Baltic states are within its sphere," Kallas said. He called for an adequate Western response to Russia’s "preventive diplomacy which is, `join us before we join you.’" Russia must be protected against its own expansionist tendencies, Kallas said. (BNS, April 16)
In Vilnius yesterday, Foreign Ministry secretary Albinas Januskas dismissed a recent RAND Corporation study on Baltic accession to NATO as plagued by "numerous flaws and impossible to implement in practice." The study implicitly contradicts the concept of indivisible security, would separate the Baltic states from other new democracies in Central and Eastern Europe, and would fragment Baltic solidarity. The study also justifies Russian security interests in the Baltic region and acknowledges Moscow’s right to veto NATO enlargement, Januskas charged. The study reportedly recommends against Baltic membership in NATO and suggests a range of poor substitutes. (BNS, April 16)
Russia Extradites One Wanted Azerbaijani, Holds On to Another.