Defense And Security Digest (Russia)
October 10, 2007
Presidents Vladimir Putin and George W. Bush chose the 2+2 format for the talks on strategic issues at their meeting in Kennebunkport (Maine) this summer. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov will represent Russia; Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Robert Gates will represent the United States.
According to Daniel Fried, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, this will be a preliminary meeting.
Choosing his words with care, Fried is apparently trying reduce expectations (the same tactic was used before the Putin-Bush summit). On the other hand, the statement clearly shows that Washington is interested in continuing dialogue with Moscow on missile defense, the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty, Kosovo’s status, the Iranian nuclear problem, and arms control prospects after START I expires.
Rice and Gates are expected in Moscow on Friday morning. Agenda of the visit is not known yet.