Russia squares up to Albright
Friday 21 February 1997
In an interview timed to coincide with the arrival of Ms Albright in Moscow, the Ukrainian president, Leonid Kuchma, delivered his strongest- ever tirade against Russia. "They make it look as if Ukraine does not exist as a sovereign state," he told Russia's Nezavisimaya Gazeta.
Russia will not be happy that Mr Kuchma - with whom it has been wrangling over the Black Sea fleet - chose to speak out just before its talks with Ms Albright, who has offered incentives such as a Nato-Russian brigade, but who has shown little hint of willingness to move in key areas.
Nato is unlikely to agree to Russia's demand for a legally binding agreement governing their relationship. Moscow is, Western sources say, doomed to make little headway should it press for a pledge from the alliance not eventually to admit the Baltics - a potential flashpoint in East-West relations.
n Vienna (Reuters) - Nato put forward a proposal at conventional- arms reduction talks in Vienna aimed at calming Moscow's fears that Nato could pile up weapons on Russia's borders.
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