- The Washington Times - Wednesday, April 24, 2002

NATO and Russia

The United States believes that NATO will have formed a new relationship with Russia before the November summit on an expansion of the Western alliance, according to a top U.S. diplomat.

Undersecretary of State Marc Grossman said he is optimistic that NATO foreign ministers will agree on a role for Russia when they meet next month in Reykjavik, Iceland.

Mr. Grossman, on a visit to Portugal last week, told reporters, "Last December, NATO foreign ministers made a promise to themselves that by the Reykjavik meeting, we would have negotiated with the Russians a new way to do business."

He said that the arrangement is being called the NATO-Russian Council, and that the Italians are already proposing a meeting after Reykjavik to "celebrate this new relationship."

"I'm optimistic that NATO ministers will be able to meet the promise that they made to themselves," Mr. Grossman said.

He added that he hopes Russian President Vladimir Putin will attend the November NATO summit in the Czech capital, Prague.

Mr. Grossman met with Ambassador Santana Carlos, Portugal's director-general for foreign policy, on his stop in Lisbon on his tour last week of NATO capitals.

Mr. Carlos, in the same news conference, said Portugal agrees that NATO must adopt strategies to fight terrorism.

"NATO shall adjust itself to the new challenges and lead the fight against terrorism," he said.

Mr. Carlos is organizing a June 12 meeting of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe to discuss how the 55 member nations can work together to fight terrorism. Portugal holds the rotating presidency of the OSCE.

Royals in Washington

Britain's Prince Edward and his wife, Sophie, arrive in Washington today to promote a film about the breaking of the Nazi secret code and to present the Congressional Awards to young people for community service and personal achievement.

The royal couple, who are also the earl and countess of Wessex, will attend a screening of the film, "Enigma," this evening and present the awards tomorrow at Washington's Duke Ellington School of the Arts, the British Embassy said.

Thomas Campbell, chairman of the Congressional Awards, said, "We have had a marvelous working relationship with Prince Edward. He's a pleasure to work with."

Prince Edward is chairman of the International Award Council, a coalition of groups in more than 60 countries associated with the Duke of Edinburgh's Award founded by Edward's father, Prince Philip.

The Congressional Awards and similar groups take their inspiration from the British program to promote community service and encourage young people to improve their lives.

The awards, created by Congress, target teen-agers and young adults aged 14 to 23 and reward them for various degrees of achievement.

Mr. Campbell said the program encourages participants across the United States to choose their own goals in community service, personal development, physical fitness and expeditions.

"Community service could be reading to the elderly. Personal development could be learning to play the piano better. An expedition could be to South Africa. One woman traveled around the world, but that is not required," he said.

Diplomatic group

The International Crisis Group has added four former ambassadors and two members of the German parliament to its board of directors.

Two of the diplomats, Saud Nasser Sabah of Kuwait and Itamar Rabinovich of Israel, are former ambassadors to the United States. Cheryl Carolus, a former South African ambassador to Britain, and Marika Fahlen, a former Swedish ambassador for humanitarian affairs, complete the diplomatic newcomers.

The German lawmakers are Friedbert Pfluger, chairman of the EU Affairs Committee, and Uta Zapf, chairman of the Defense subcommittee on arms control.

Zbigniew Brzezinski, national security adviser to President Carter, is also among the 18 new members of the board announced yesterday by the think tank, which has offices in Washington, Brussels and London.

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide