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NATO Warns Moscow No ‘Business as Usual’ Amid Conflict

During a NATO meeting Tuesday, world leaders warned Russia that its recent actions against Georgia could endanger Moscow's diplomatic relations. Analysts examine how the West and Russia have clashed over the crisis.

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  • GWEN IFILL:

    The foreign ministers arrived at the hastily arranged NATO meeting in Brussels with one goal: pressuring Russia to withdraw from Georgia.

    Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice led that charge, insisting that Russia stick to the terms of the cease-fire deal it signed over the weekend.

    CONDOLEEZZA RICE, U.S. Secretary of State: It is time for the Russian president to keep his word to withdraw Russian forces from Georgia back to the Aug. 6-7 status quo ante and to return, in fact, all forces that were not in South Ossetia at the time of that — of the outbreak of that conflict.

  • GWEN IFILL:

    The U.S., Canada, and 24 other members of NATO have staked their unity and their prestige on the outcome.

  • CONDOLEEZZA RICE:

    … this alliance, NATO, having come so far after the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in achieving a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace, is not going to permit a new line to be drawn in Europe, a line between those who were fortunate enough to make it into the transatlantic structures and those who still aspire to those transatlantic structures.

  • GWEN IFILL:

    NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer echoed Rice's tough talk.

  • JAAP DE HOOP SCHEFFER, Secretary-General, NATO:

    There can be no business as usual with Russia under present circumstances. And the future of our relations will depend on the concrete actions Russia will take to honor the words of President Medvedev to abide by the six-point peace plan, which is not happening at the moment, which is not happening as we speak.

  • GWEN IFILL:

    Russia's foreign minister has insisted Russia is not occupying Georgia.

    SERGEY LAVROV, Foreign Minister, Russia (through translator): Russia hasn't occupied anyone, is not planning to occupy anyone. We don't have any plans to annex anyone's territory. We are fulfilling, through our peacekeeping forces, those functions set out in the agreements signed by conflicting sides, including Georgia.

  • GWEN IFILL:

    Secretary Rice is headed next to Poland to sign an accord to deploy a U.S. missile defense system. That move has been bitterly criticized by Moscow.

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