NATO needs to show a strong military presence on its eastern flank, said Merkel while addressing lawmakers in Berlin on Thursday.
Moscow had caused a loss of trust with the West by putting "the validity of law and the inviolability of frontiers" into question, according to the chancellor.
"In the east, Russia has deeply unsettled our allies by its actions in Ukraine," said Merkel. "They now need a clear reassurance through the alliance," she added, urging "visible and reliable" solidarity with other NATO members.
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