site.btaUPDATED Stoltenberg: North Atlantic Region Faces Global Threats

Stoltenberg: North Atlantic Region Faces Global Threats
Stoltenberg: North Atlantic Region Faces Global Threats
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg addresses the Spring Session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, Sofia, May 27, 2024 (BTA Photo)

NATO is a regional alliance, but the North Atlantic region is facing global threats, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said here on Monday, addressing the Spring Session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly. The war in Ukraine is an example of this, because the most important suppliers and supporters of Russia’s war are in Asia, he added.

The speaker specified that China supplies Russia with dual-use goods, has not condemned the war in Ukraine, and provides 90% of the microelectronics that Russia uses to manufacture missiles and tanks for its war in Ukraine. Iran supplies drones to Russia, and North Korea has delivered more than a million rounds of artillery shells, Stoltenberg pointed out. In turn, Russia has shared missile technologies with Iran and North Korea.

"So, what we see in Europe, in Ukraine, is how Asia matters for the war in Ukraine, and it reminds us of that what happens in Europe matters for Asia, and what happens in Asia matters for Europe", Stoltenber said.

In his words, the NATO countries are providing unprecedented military support to Ukraine and almost 99% of the military assistance comes from members of the Alliance. Thanks to this aid, Ukraine has freed 50% of the territory occupied by Russia since the start of the invasion, the Secretary General said.

At the beginning of the war, most experts believed that Russia will quickly capture Ukraine but this did not happen. Instead, the Ukrainians sank a lot of ships in the Black Sea and inflicted heavy losses on the Russians, he added.

The problem, though, is that in recent months we have not been delivering to Ukraine what we promised. This delay in military support has consequences on the battlefield, Stoltenberg pointed out.

Therefore, there is an urgent need for the Allies to agree on a greater role for NATO in coordination of the support, the speaker said, adding that he will propose this at the Washington Summit.

NATO must elaborate new defence plans and ensure that it has the necessary forces, higher combat readiness and new deterrence capabilities. The Allies do invest more. At present, 18 member countries spend 2% of their GDP on defence, compared to fewer than ten two years ago and just three in 2014.

Said Stoltenberg: "To make this really effective, we also need not only a better organization that provides more accountability, transparency, and predictability in the delivery of supplies, but also need more long-term financial commitment."

In addition to deference and deterrence and the war in Ukraine, the Summit should address global partnerships and in particular NATO’s Asia-Pacific partners: Japan, South Korea and Australia. NATO will not enlarge to the Asia-Pacific region but must work with its allies there because they share common values, he said.

The present world is more dangerous, but the Alliance is stronger. No one can say what the next threat to NATO will be, but we can say that we will be secure if we are united, the Secretary General said, concluding his remarks.

/LG/

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By 17:58 on 20.06.2024 Today`s news

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