HC Deb 20 May 2004 vol 421 cc1162-3W
Harry Cohen

To ask Secretary of state for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to his answer of 22 March 2004,Officals Report, column 541W, on the Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty, what representations he has received from Russia about the Adaptated Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty; for what reasons the enlargement of NATO went ahead without an agreement for the continuance of a CFE Treaty; whether the new NATO states were required to give a commitment to join a CFE Treaty; whether they have given such a commitment; what commitments on (a) restraint on troop numbers and (b) build-ups NATO has given in the absence of an agreed CFE Treaty; and if he will make a statement. [173386]

Mr. MacShane

My hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Bill Rammell) discussed CFE issues with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimir Chizov during their meeting in Moscow on 6 April 2004.

The Adapted CFE Treaty (ACFE) cannot come into force until it has been ratified by all States Party. To date only three States have done so: Belarus, Ukraine and Kazakhstan. Ratification by NATO Allies is delayed by continued Russian failure to meet the political commitments entered into at the 1999 OSCE Istanbul Summit, in relation to their presence in Georgia and Moldova. Until the ACFE is ratified, the 1990 CFE Treaty remains in force.

There is no link between NATO Enlargement and accession to the CFE Regime. However we welcome the stated intention of all the new Allies involved to seek accession to the ACFE once the Treaty has entered into force.