December 20, 2006 - 17:20 AMT
RF State Duma: CIS Member States' Joining NATO Conflicts with Their Strategic Interests
"The Commonwealth of Independent States meets the interests of all its members and the international community. It has potential for development and cooperation in all directions," says the statement issued by the Russian State Duma today. The parliamentarians underscore that 'peacekeeping operation for rescuing human lives and ensuring of human rights in conflict zones were successfully carried out within the CIS framework.' They also drew attention to the growth of the CSTO's authority and efficiency of cooperation within the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

The deputies remark that 'development of integration forces in the CIS meets serious opposition of various outer forces not interested in formation of a strong integration union, a rival in the world market and political arena.' The Duma deputies are convinced that 'membership in NATO of any CIS member state conflicts with the highest strategic interests of these states and wish of the peoples.' The State Duma expresses its negative attitude to NATO enlargement to the East considering it 'contradicting to the interests of international security.'

"15 years that followed the CIS formation were the years of serious ordeals and sometimes disappointments. However the CIS has not lost importance. This commonwealth can consolidate positions in the world politics and economy via mutually beneficial and equal cooperation," the statement says, reports ITAR-TASS.