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NATO Concerned Over Norway's Insufficient Defence Spending as Russia’s Neighbor

© AP PhotoTwo Norwegian sailors onboard the Norwegian support vessel Valkyrien
Two Norwegian sailors onboard the Norwegian support vessel Valkyrien - Sputnik International
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BRUSSELS (Sputnik) – NATO is concerned that Norway, being a neighbour of Russia, does not meet the alliance’s defence spending requirements, NATO Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller said Monday.

"Norway is the only NATO country today bordering Russia that does not spend 2 percent of its GDP on defence. And does not yet have a credible plan to get there," Gottemoeller said in the Norwegian Atlantic Committee.

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NATO is concerned about China's growing influence in the international arena, Rose Gottemoeller sai.

"Rising economic and military powers including China are increasingly asserting their influence on the global stage," Gottemoeller said in the Norwegian Atlantic Committee.

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In 2018, Norwegian state secretary within the Ministry of Defence, Tone Skogen, said that Oslo did not regard Russia a threat and wanted to be a predictable neighbor for Moscow.

The relations between Russia and NATO deteriorated in 2014 in wake of the Ukrainian crisis. The bloc accused Moscow of interfering in the conflict and decided to boost its military presence in Eastern Europe. It also suspended all practical military cooperation with Russia but kept military lines of communication open.

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Moscow has repeatedly denied these allegations and stated that amassing troops and military equipment on its borders is provocative and violates past NATO pledges. Russia has warned that such actions could lead to regional and global destabilization.

She is currently in Norway to participate in the Leangkollen Security Conference organized by the committee.

Gottemoeller is also set to hold talks with a number of high-level officials.

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