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NATO boosts ‘deterrents and defenses’ in Europe after key summit


Talks between Boris Johnson of Britain, France, and Joe Biden as they arrive at NATO headquarters in Brussels (Belgium), March 24, 2022.

Reuters| Reuters

NATO agreed to increase its European defenses against Russia’s continued aggression towards Ukraine.

Following an unusual summit of NATO military alliances in Brussels on Thursday night, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg spoke out to reporters saying that NATO has agreed collectively to increase its defence capabilities in the region.

Today, NATO leaders accepted to reset deterrents for longer-term security realities. He stated that on land we would have significantly more troops in the east of the alliance, at higher readiness and with more equipment and supplies.

We will increase our air defense and deploy more aircraft. He said that at sea we would have carriers strike groups, submarines, and large numbers of combat vessels on a continuous basis. Members are also expected to increase their cyber defenses.

Stoltenberg indicated that further details would be determined at the June summit. A statement from the alliance at the conclusion of its meeting called Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, “the gravest threat to Euro-Atlantic security in decades.”

According to it, “Russian aggression against Ukraine has broken the peace in Europe” and “is causing immense human sufferings and destruction.”

The meeting of global leaders took place in Europe Thursday. They discussed the conflict in Ukraine as well as how Russia can help. In addition to the NATO Summit in Brussels, there will be meetings between EU leaders as well as G-7 members.

Stoltenberg stated that the summit was being held as leaders face “the worst security crisis of our generation.”

Leaders will address the crisis,” he stated, and its consequences “for Ukraine and NATO as well as for all of international rules-based order.”

Stoltenberg has been extended by one year as secretary general. He stated that NATO had committed to increasing its presence in the east part of the alliance with approximately 40,000 additional soldiers and significant air and navy assets being placed under direct NATO command.

NATO announced earlier the creation of four new battlegroups within the Eastern part of its alliance in Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary. The four new battlegroups are in addition to the four existing battlegroups in Poland and in the Baltic states.

Separate comments were made to CNBC by Stoltenberg Thursday. He said that President Obama was “President.” [Vladimir]Putin is making a grave mistake. He launched a war to wage war on an independent sovereign state.

He said that he underestimated the power of the Ukrainian people as well as the courage of the Ukrainian population and their armed forces to CNBC’s Hadley Gamble.

The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy addressed NATO members on Thursday as well. He claimed that Russia had used phosphorous bombs during an attack.

“This morning, we had phosphorus Bombs from Russia. People were killed. Children were murdered,” Zelenskyy stated during a videolink address to NATO Summit.

Separately, on Thursday the governor of eastern Luhansk claimed four persons had been killed by shelling, phosphorus, and other methods. A video of the attack on buildings was attached by the governor. The videos have yet to be verified.  

Independent verification of claims by Zelenskyy or the Luhansk governor has been impossible. Zelenskyy didn’t provide evidence in the address.

When Dan DeLuce of NBC reached out to the Pentagon Wednesday morning, he was unable confirm that phosphorous had been used.

Zelenskyy called on NATO leaders Thursday to support the country’s military.

Russia wants to “go further”, Zelenskyy stated in a recorded video address at the NATO summit.

“NATO still has to prove what the alliance is capable of saving people,” he stated.