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Published on 05 Apr 2022 / In News & Politics

(23 Oct 1996) Russian/Nat

Russian officials have reacted angrily to President Bill Clinton's proposals for NATO's eastwards expansion.

Foreign Minister Primakov reiterated Moscow's opposition to NATO's move.

And the Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov's response was also unenthusiastic.

The Russian Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov has said that Moscow's opposition to NATO's expansion eastward has not changed.

SOUNDBITE: (Russian)
"We haven't discussed questions connected with NATO. As to the matter in general, you know our negative attitude towards NATO's expansion plans."
SUPERCAPTION: Yevgeny Primakov, Russian Foreign Minister

His comments come after President Clinton announced his plan for the alliance to embrace East European countries by 1999.

Primakov gave a wait-and-see response to Clinton's statement that NATO would admit Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic by the end of the century.

SOUNDBITE: (Russian)
"All I can say at the moment is let's wait and see".
SUPERCAPTION: Yevgeny Primakov, Russian Foreign Minister

The Communist Party leader, Gennady Zyuganov, also gave a lukewarm response to Clinton's speech.

He said that the U-S President was using the speech to win votes in the forthcoming elections and that the Communists were against the expansion of a military bloc.

SOUNDBITE: (Russian)
"The military strategy of expanding the bloc has outlived itself. One should march into the 21st century with a more humanistic and far-sighted policy. As for Clinton, elections are around the corner. There are many potential Polish votes around Buffalo and Chicago, so he probably wants to attract them."
SUPERCAPTION: Gennady Zyuganov, Leader of Communist Party

Zyuganov believes it would be better for the U-S to be the guarantors of peace in neighbouring countries like Ukraine and the growth of peaceful bodies like the Council of Europe in the next century.

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