Rogozin Gives NATO Leader a Tomahawk

In a sign that Russia is keen to draw a line under recent squabbles with NATO, Dmitry Rogozin, the country's new envoy to the alliance presented Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer with a souvenir tomahawk Monday.

On his first day in the job, Rogozin, a former State Duma deputy and outspoken nationalist, signaled that the country wanted an end to disagreements with the military alliance.

"Now we have to find a shovel so we can bury this hatchet as deep as possible in the ground," Rogozin said, RIA-Novosti reported. "Our main goal is to respect each other's interests and make the world more predictable and secure."

President Vladimir Putin appointed Rogozin, 44, to the NATO post earlier this month, and he will attend his first Russia-NATO council meeting Wednesday, the news agency reported.

The gift came despite the charge made by Rogozin last week -- prior to arriving in Brussels -- that NATO's "compass is out of whack," in reference to the alliance's eastward expansion at a time when it claims the chief threat is from the south.

Rogozin is likely to push Moscow's line that U.S. missile defense systems proposed for Central Europe would threaten Russia's security.

Rogozin could not be reached Tuesday, but his wife, Tatyana, confirmed the gift had been made. E-mailed requests to NATO for comments from de Hoop Scheffer went unanswered.