Recommendations of The Participants of The Expert Dialogue on NATO-RUSSIA Military Risk Reduction in Europe

The need for dialogue

1.1. Political dialogue should be revitalized at the ambassadorial level in the NATO-Russia Council and include briefings by military experts as appropriate.

1.2. As part of the NATO 2030 reflection process, Russia and NATO member states should analyze relations between NATO and Russia with a view to deve- loping the military-to-military dialogue. At a time when most NATO-Russia coop- eration remains suspended, such a dialogue should not be viewed as a departure from NATO’s “no business as usual” policy, but as a step that is necessary to increase predictability and reduce the risk of military incidents at sea, in the air and on land escalating to the level of military conflict.

1.3 Once Russia and NATO member states reach a formal or informal under- standing or agreement, they could take initial steps in the form of parallel unilat- eral measures that do not necessarily require conclusion of a formal agreement between NATO, or NATO member states, and Russia, which could prove politically difficult to achieve in the present environment.

1.4. Regular meetings should be held between the Chief of General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, the Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, the NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) and the Chairman of the NATO Military Committee, reinforced by military experts, to address issues of current concern.

1.5. In addition, NATO member states and Russia should resume contacts at the level of military representatives in the NATO Military Committee and restore the Russian military liaison mission at SACEUR Headquarters.

1.6. Furthermore, NATO member states and Russia should enhance military contacts in OSCE forums to provide a more efficient and inclusive format for dis- cussion and quick decision-making on current issues relating to military activities.

1.7. NATO and Russia should consider the possibility of establishing special NATO-Russia communication channels or hotlines in sensitive regions such as the Baltic, and Black sea regions and the High North area.

1.8. While the recommendations offered in this paper would be developed pri- marily in NATO-Russia channels, a number of them could be opened to discussion with and participation by other countries, such as Sweden and Finland in the Baltic and High North regions, and Ukraine and Georgia in the Black Sea region.

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