Mon, 26 Jul 2021

Leaders of NATO member states have said there could be no return to normal relations between the Western military alliance and Russia until it complies with international law.

'Until Russia demonstrates compliance with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities, there can be no return to 'business as usual,'' the leaders said on June 14 in a joint communique after their one-day summit in Brussels.

"Russia's aggressive actions constitute a threat to Euro-Atlantic security," the leaders said, citing its "growing multi-domain military build-up, more assertive posture, novel military capabilities, and provocative activities, including near NATO borders," among other things.

'Russia's nuclear strategy and comprehensive nuclear weapon systems modernization, diversification, and expansion, including the qualitative and quantitative increase of Russian nonstrategic nuclear weapons, increasingly support a more aggressive posture of strategic intimidation.'

The allies also denounced Moscow's 'hybrid actions,' 'widespread disinformation campaigns,' 'malicious' cyberactivities, and election interference directed against NATO members.

NATO "will continue to respond to the deteriorating security environment by enhancing our deterrence and defense posture, including by a forward presence in the eastern part of the alliance," the communique said.

"NATO does not seek confrontation and poses no threat to Russia."

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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