World Bulletin / News Desk
"It is absurd to speak about a threat emanating from Russia when dozens of people die in the center of Europe and hundreds of people die in the Middle East daily," presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Friday, according to the Russian News Agency.
"Only an absolutely short-sighted organization can distort accents in such a way," Peskov said.
The comments came as the leaders of 28 NATO member countries gathered Friday in Poland for a two-day summit.
Addressing a forum in Warsaw hours before the key summit’s kickoff, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said the alliance would take major decisions to address concerns of member states over a more assertive Russia.
“Today, we will agree to enhance our forward presence in the east of the alliance. In Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and here in Poland,” he said.
“We will deploy, by rotation, a robust, multinational battalion in each of the countries. Making clear that an attack against one ally will be met by forces from across the alliance,” he added.
Stoltenberg stressed that these measures were not aimed at a new confrontation with Russia: “We do not want a new Cold War. The Cold War is history. And it should remain history.”
He went on to say that NATO will continue “to seek constructive and meaningful dialogue with Russia.”
But, Peskov warned, “of course, it will, perhaps, be hardly possible to find some ground for interaction," between Russia and NATO, if the alliance deploys “new aviation groups and land force units, bringing them closer to the Russian borders” and “if the image of an enemy is intensively sought to unleash anti-Russia hysteria and implant Russophobia”.
Asked whether Russia sees NATO as an enemy, Peskov said, "Russia is not looking for it; it sometimes states its presence,” Tass reported.
Peskov said Moscow is closely following the NATO summit, adding, "We hope that common sense will prevail after all."
The spokesperson said that Russia has always been open to dialogue and is interested in cooperation, “but only mutually beneficial [cooperation] that takes into account mutual interests.”