NATO Undergoing ‘Fundamental Transformation’ With Stonger Eastern Flank, But Keeps Eye on China
00:29 GMT 10.04.2022 (Updated: 00:46 GMT 10.04.2022)
© JOHN THYSNATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gestures as he speaks during a joint press conference with Ukraine's Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration after their bilateral meeting at the NATO headquarters in Brussels on January 10, 2022.
© JOHN THYS
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - NATO is going to beef up its military forces on the eastern flank as part of a fundamental reset of the alliance, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said in an interview with The Telegraph.
Stoltenberg said that NATO was "in the midst of a very fundamental transformation" and that this major "reset" will entail the replacement of the relatively small "tripwire" presence on the alliance's eastern flank with stronger forces.
According to The Telegraph, NATO military commanders are developing options for the reset and the alliance's military presence in countries like Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland is expected to be transformed into a "major force" that would be able to repel a potential invasion.
"What we see now is a new reality, a new normal for European security," Stoltenberg told the newspaper, adding that NATO leaders are expected to make decisions on "what we call a reset, a longer-term adaptation of NATO" at the Madrid summit in June.
Stoltenberg said in the interview published on Saturday that NATO’s "strategic concept" will, for the first time, address the "threat" from China, amid closer cooperation between Beijing and Russia.
On Thursday, Stoltenberg said at a press conference following the meetings of NATO foreign ministers in Brussels that the alliance’s strategic concept, to be finalized for the Madrid summit in June, "must also take account of how China’s growing influence and coercive policies affect our security."
The strategic concept is a fundamental document of NATO that outlines the military alliance's key security challenges and guides its political and military development. The last strategic concept was approved in 2010 and has not been revisited since.