US Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan outside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation. © Sputnik / Anton Denisov

Moscow has received the US response to the proposals concerning collective security in Europe, the Russian Foreign Ministry confirmed on Wednesday.

Ambassador John Sullivan delivered the responses from both the US and NATO to the Russian draft bilateral treaty made public in mid-December. Moscow proposed eight points in the draft, and expected a detailed response to each one.

The US was asked to stop any further NATO expansion to the east, halt military programs in non-member countries that used to be part of the Soviet Union – and pledge Ukraine and Georgia would “never” join the alliance – remove its nuclear weapons from Europe, and not deploy any offensive weapons capable of targeting Russia along its borders. Moscow demanded legally binding guarantees on all of those matters.

The State Department has reportedly asked Russia not to make its response public. Speaking at the Russian parliament earlier on Wednesday, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that the ministry would communicate the “essence of their reaction” to the Russian public.

Lavrov explained that once the American response was received, the Foreign Ministry will work with other departments to give President Vladimir Putin a proposal of further steps concerning Russia’s security.