Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov has accused some NATO countries of illegally supplying Soviet-made arms to Georgia.
The Russian official Friday did not name the countries allegedly involved, but he said they were from among the seven formerly communist-ruled East European countries that joined the alliance in 2004. Ivanov made his comments following a meeting with defense ministers of the 26 NATO countries in the Slovenian seaside resort of Portoroz.
Georgian officials filed espionage charges against Russian military officers this week. Ivanov alleged the move was part of efforts to force Moscow to withdraw its troops from Georgia and clear the way for Georgian authorities to pursue a military solution in secessionist areas of the country.
NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer called on both sides to de-escalate tensions.
Earlier this month, NATO angered Russia by approving intensified dialogue with Georgia.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.