From Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty: "Armenian Defense Minister Seyran Ohanian says his country's main reason for canceling its participation in the NATO military exercises in Georgia was NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer's support for Azerbaijan, RFE/RL's Armenian Service reports."
Snippets from Georgian government, BBC, NYT, and other media coverage.
The man is shown describing plans to seize control of the government by leading a convoy of 200 military vehicles, backed by 5,000 Russian troops, into Tbilisi."
"'Because it's a PFP exercise, it's open to everybody which also means that everybody was fully informed when it was proposed in late spring of last year,' the spokesperson added. 'Nobody was forced to participate and Russia chose not to. But they knew exactly what was going on and there was no issue. Even when they said recently that they were concerned about the exercise, we said: 'although the subscription date had passed, why don’t you send some observers?' But they declined that as well. There is nothing controversial from our point of view.'"
From Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty: "The latest row stems from the spying conviction in Tallinn in February of a former top Estonian defense official, Herman Simm. Simm was the man who handled all Estonia's top-secret material from NATO. He was found guilty of spying for Russian intelligence and sentenced to 12 1/2 years in prison.
Western intelligence officials describe the case as the most serious security leak involving NATO since the end of the end of the Cold War."
Isabelle Francois, the director of NATO's Information Bureau in Moscow, along with a colleague will be stripped of their diplomatic accreditations immediately, according to Interfax.
Defence Minister Peter MacKay said neither NATO nor the Canadian government has been informed of the reasons for the expulsion."