Creating Pan-EU Army to Counterbalance Russia is 'Paranoia' - Lawmaker

© Flickr / Andreas NowakGerman Bundeswehr soldiers
German Bundeswehr soldiers - Sputnik International
Senior Russian lawmaker called the idea of establishing a unified army to counterbalance Russia a "European version of paranoia."

A Leopard 2 tank is pictured during a demonstration event held for the media by the German Bundeswehr in Munster near Hannover, Germany. (File) - Sputnik International
Who is the Enemy? EC President Wants to Form European Army
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker's idea of creating an EU-wide army is delusional, the chairman of Russian parliamentary committee on the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) said Sunday.

Earlier in the day, German weekly Welt am Sonntag quoted Juncker as saying that a pan-European army could signal to Russia that the European Union was serious in its intention to "react credibly" to dangers facing the bloc and its neighbors.

"The European version of paranoia: declaring the establishment of a unified army to counterbalance Russia, which does not intend to go to war with anyone," Leonid Slutsky wrote on his Twitter page.

The idea, according to Welt am Sonntag, has found support among German lawmakers. Norbert Rottgen, chairman of the Bundestag's foreign affairs committee, said time had come to unify 28 armies into the wider European armed forces.

"The Europeans spend enormous sums of money for the military combined, much more than Russia. But our military capabilities remain an insufficient security policy as long as we maintain small national armies," the newspaper quoted Rottgen as saying.

The West has been accusing Russia of military aggression toward Ukraine, claims repeatedly denied by Moscow as groundless. Russia, for its part, has on numerous occasions pointed to an unprecedented expansion of NATO toward its western border.

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