The return of NATO: deterring Russian aggression in Europe
12:15, 4 September 2015

The return of NATO: deterring Russian aggression in Europe

NATO increases presence and assurance measures - secretary-general Stoltenberg

12:15, 4 September 2015

Jens Stoltenberg
Associated Press

The secretary-general of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Jens Stoltenberg in his latest interview with WSJ spoke on deterring Russia in terms of European security issues.

"For 40 years NATO’s main and almost only task was to provide deterrence in Europe...  Now we are on our way back," stated NATO secretary-general.

Mr. Stoltenberg stressed that Russia has to respect the international standards, particularly, when it comes to the national boarders. "Of course cooperation between countries requires that some fundamental principles are respected, - he claimed. - That is what made Ukraine and the annexation of Crimea so serious".

He noted that the policy of NATO is transparent and predictable, while Russia is undermining the whole idea of the agreements.

Therefore, the issue of the increasing collective defense of the European countries is a topical one. Collective defence is very much based on increasing the readiness of the forces and ability to reinforce if needed. "The whole idea is the combination of increased presence with assurance measures—more planes, more ships, more exercises, more troops on the ground on rotational basis, doubling the size of the NATO response force, establishing the spearhead force—all this together makes sure we have credible deterrence," said NATO secretary-general. In order to repulse any attacks Europe needs much heavier troops, different kinds of capabilities for higher-end, heavier operations than crisis management in Afghanistan.

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