NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has said that NATO allies have called on Russia to withdraw forces from Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova at a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council held earlier today.
Stoltenberg pointed out that the Russian military forces in Georgia, Ukraine and Moldova are 'uninvited and not welcomed.'
Russia has military forces in Georgia, in Ukraine, in Crimea, and also in Moldova. And these forces are there without the consent of the governments of these countries... NATO Allies also in the meeting today, called on Russia to withdraw those forces and to respect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Georgia, of Ukraine, of Moldova, he told the press.
Stoltenberg noted that during the meeting, Russia raised the proposals they published in December, urging NATO to stop admitting new members to the Alliance and to withdraw forces from Eastern allies.
However, the Alliance reaffirmed the 'right for each nation to choose its own security arrangements.'
The Russian Foreign Ministry put forward two proposals on ‘security guarantees’ between Russia, the US and NATO on December 17, which include restrictions on troop, ship, and aircraft deployments for both NATO and Russia, as well limits to the deployment of intermediate and short-range missiles abroad.
On December 10, Russia released a statement demanding NATO member states rescind the 2008 Bucharest Summit declaration supporting Georgia and Ukraine's goal of becoming members of the alliance.
Stoltenberg later turned down Russia's demands, saying that they violate 'core principles for European security.'