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New US Budget Includes $4.3Bln for NATO Members, Allies in Europe

© AP Photo / Geert Vanden WijngaertNATO country flags wave outside NATO headquarters in Brussels on Tuesday July 28, 2015
NATO country flags wave outside NATO headquarters in Brussels on Tuesday July 28, 2015 - Sputnik International
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The 2017 US budget allocates $4.3 billion to help NATO member states and European allies, the budget document release by the White House announced on Tuesday.

General view of the main entrance of the NATO headquarters in Brussels - Sputnik International
High Time for a Thaw: Russia, NATO Re-Engaging Contacts
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Russia’s relations with NATO also deteriorated. NATO has been increasing its presence in Eastern Europe since Crimea rejoined Russia in March 2014 following a referendum the West refused to recognize as legitimate, instead blaming Moscow for violating Ukraine's territorial integrity. Russia has denied the allegations and has repeatedly stated that the bloc's increased activities near its borders undermine regional and international stability.

"In response to increasing attempts by the Russian Federation to constrain the foreign and domestic policy choices of neighboring countries, the budget includes over $4.3 billion for political, economic, public diplomacy and military support to build resilience and reduce vulnerabilities to Russian aggression among NATO allies and partner states in Europe, Eurasia, and Central Asia," the document stated.

As part of those efforts, the budget includes $3.4 billion to support the US-NATO European Reassurance Initiative (ERI). The Initiative seeks to increase US forces’ training and rotational presence across Europe; increase US Navy participation in NATO naval deployments; deploy equipment and improve of existing infrastructure; and build partner country capacities.

 

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