NEWS FROM THE OMRI DAILY DIGEST

East European reps reiterate desire to enter NATO

Government officials and journalists from the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Ukraine, Slovenia, Austria, Finland, NATO, the U.S., Great Britain, Germany, and France met to discuss the future of European security and NATO enlargement on July 10. The conference, held near Prague, was organized by the Foundation for International Studies and the Bohemian Foundation. Czech, Hungarian, Slovenian, and Polish officials reiterated their desire to join NATO as soon as possible, saying they hoped NATO would formally approve enlargement in December. They dismissed Russian objections, saying expansion is not directed against Russia, but rather is part of a broader process of European integration. All participants wanted to build a "strategic partnership" with Russia in parallel with NATO enlargement, but some worried that Moscow's position could make it difficult to achieve both goals simultaneously.

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