German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht said on Sunday during a visit to German troops in Lithuania that NATO would discuss Russia’s proposals for the alliance’s military affairs on its eastern border, but that it would not allow Moscow to “dictate” its security affairs.
Moscow provided a list of military requests to the United States and its allies on Friday.
These requests included the withdrawal of the NATO enhanced Forward Presence battalions from the Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania that had previously been occupied by Russia in Soviet times, as well as from Poland, where Moscow had exerted its influence when Warsaw was a Communist satellite state under the Soviet Empire. guardianship.
In addition, Moscow is seeking a legal guarantee that NATO will abandon its military efforts in Eastern Europe and Ukraine, essentially giving Russia a de facto veto over Ukraine’s membership in NATO. At present, NATO has already frozen Ukraine’s membership while providing security assistance and military advisers.
What did German Defense Minister Lambrecht say?
In Rukla, Lithuania, on his first visit as Minister of Defense, Lambrecht said: “We need to talk to each other, which means discussing the proposals that Russia has put forward,” adding: “But it cannot be not that Russia is dictating to NATO partners how they position themselves. “
“We need to resolve the current tensions diplomatically but also by putting in place a credible deterrent,” Lambrecht said.
Lithuanian Defense Minister Arvydas Anusauskas said NATO must resist Moscow’s efforts to divide Europe again into spheres of influence.
“We must support Ukraine by all means, including the delivery of lethal weapons,” he said alongside Lambrecht without providing details.
Western countries have threatened Russia with severe economic sanctions if Moscow escalates the conflict in Ukraine further. Russia has repeatedly stated that it fears Kiev’s closer ties with NATO and Western countries.
ar / wd (AFP, Reuters)