Russia, NATO need new rules to cut risk of war, ex-ministers say

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BRUSSELS, Aug 26: Russia and NATO must agree common rules to handle unexpected military encounters to reduce the risk of inadvertently triggering a war between Moscow and the West, a group of former foreign and defense ministers said on Wednesday. With both Russia and NATO intensifying military exercises because of the crisis in Ukraine, incidents such as mid-air face-offs between rival military jets are on the increase. Calling for a high-level NATO-Russia meeting, the group of 14 — including former Russian foreign minister Igor Ivanov, ex-German defense minister Volker Ruehe and colleagues from Britain, France, Spain and Turkey — said rules for communication at sea and in the air were paramount. “The situation is ripe with potential for either dangerous miscalculation or an accident that could trigger a worsening of the crisis or even a direct military confrontation,” they said in a report published by the European Leadership Network.

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