HL Deb 10 January 2005 vol 668 c4WA
Lord Hylton

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What position they took at the recent Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe ministerial meeting in Sofia, concerning the withdrawal of Russian forces and military material from Moldova, which is some two years overdue; and what prospects they foresee for the implementation of the relevant agreement. [HL443]

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean

Our position is set out in the UK's statement at the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) ministerial meeting in Sofia. We want Russia to fulfil commitments made when signing the Adapted Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty at the OSCE summit in Istanbul in 1999. These commitments include the full withdrawal of arms and ammunition from Transdnistria, or their destruction in situ, and the withdrawal of Russian forces.

Together with NATO allies we have stated that we can envisage ratification of the Adapted CFE Treaty only in the context of full compliance by all State Parties with agreed treaty limits and consistent with the commitments contained in the CFE Final Act".

The final communiqué of the NATO ministerial meeting on 9 December 2004 underlines this position: "We recall that fulfilment of the remaining Istanbul commitments on the Republic of Georgia and the Republic of Moldova will create the conditions for Allies and other States Parties to move forward on ratification of the Adapted CFE Treaty. Given the lack of progress in 2004 on withdrawal of Russian military forces from the Republic of Moldova it is essential that efforts be intensified to complete the withdrawal as soon as possible".

The full text of the UK's statement is available on the OSCE website at http://www.osce.org/events/mc/bulgaria2004/documents/files/mc—1102435776— e.pdf.

The full text of the final communiqué is available on the NATO website at http://www.nato.int/docu/pr/2004/p04– l70e.htm.