NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg expects the alliance to push for higher defense spending than the current target of 2 percent of a country's GDP at its meeting in Vilnius in July. Stoltenberg stated this in an interview published today for the "Welt" newspaper, world agencies reported.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg expects the alliance to push for higher defense spending than the current target of 2 percent of a country's GDP at its meeting in Vilnius in July.
Stoltenberg stated this in an interview published today for the "Welt" newspaper, world agencies reported.
In his words, the NATO countries can set a "more ambitious" goal, "because everyone sees that we need to invest more" in defense.
At a meeting in Wales in September 2014, the parties to the pact agreed that each of them would allocate 2 percent of their GDP to defense for up to 10 years.
"The two percent was originally planned for ten years, that is, until 2024, that is, we have to renew" this goal, Stoltenberg said in the interview.
He adds that the arms and ammunition stocks of the countries of the alliance are "increasingly depleted" in view of the support provided to Ukraine.
"Naturally, it is necessary to replenish our own stocks of ammunition and weapon systems, including to ensure future supplies to Ukraine. That is why NATO has expanded its cooperation with industry," Stoltenberg added.
The Swedish Prime Minister wants to resume NATO dialogue with Turkey as soon as possible
"NATO is not and will not be a belligerent country. We are not sending our troops or NATO aircraft to Ukraine," the secretary general of the pact points out.
But it points out that the alliance is supporting Kyiv with equipment.
"Ukraine has the right to self-defense according to the UN charter, and we have the right to support it in asserting this right," he says.
"Of course, always" there is a risk of escalation, so it is important that the alliance strengthens its military presence on its eastern flank.
Thus, Moscow will understand that NATO plans to defend "every centimeter" of its territory, Stoltenberg emphasizes, writes BTA.
"The risk of using nuclear weapons is not great. But Russia's nuclear rhetoric is completely irresponsible. It is dangerous. Russia must know that victory cannot be achieved in a nuclear war, so one should not be waged." says the head of the North Atlantic Alliance.
He adds that NATO is closely monitoring Russia's actions and currently sees no changes that would affect its nuclear forces.
"Otherwise, of course, we would have reacted," Stoltenberg said.