11:32 GMT14 August 2020
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    Increased NATO activity close to Russia's borders increased the possibility of escalating confrontations, Russia's Permanent Representative to NATO Alexander Grushko told Sputnik.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Increased NATO activity close to Russia's borders creates a situation whereby an arms race and escalating confrontations between the two sides become possible, Russia's Permanent Representative to NATO Alexander Grushko told Sputnik.

    "Overall, this entire set of measures coupled with increased military activity, I mean drills and other training exercises which NATO conducts along our borders almost daily, this creates a new reality, and we know from the history of the Cold War that such a blend of military planning and politics generally leads to an arms race spiral, spiraling confrontations, which will be difficult to stop," Grushko said in an interview.

    The envoy also noted that NATO was continuing to expand its military infrastructure in increasing proximity to Russia.

    "Work is being carried out to upgrade airfields, ports, certify supply routes to eliminate bureaucratic barriers, which obstruct the free movement of forces," he stated.

    The envoy recalled the unfolding NATO program to deploy four additional battalions to Eastern Europe, which was adopted at the Alliance's summit last year in an effort to counter alleged Russian aggression. He pointed to NATO's stocking arms in Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands, creating two headquarters in Bucharest and Szczecin alongside eight coordination posts across Europe, as well as boosting the number of air bases in the Baltic states from one to four.

    All of this has to be taken into account by Russia "from political as well as military points of view," Grushko said.

    Moreover, NATO's outdated attempts to coerce Russia from a position of strength are not a successful strategy and are likely to backfire, Russia's Permanent Representative to NATO Alexander Grushko told Sputnik.

    "In essence, NATO is falling back on Cold War-era security schemes and is trying to talk with Russia from a position of strength, which will not yield any outcomes, instead giving only results opposite to those desired," Grushko said in an interview.

    The Alliance's plans to contain Russia are now transforming into military planning, he stressed, recalling the political decisions to boost NATO presence in Eastern Europe taken at the bloc's Warsaw summit last year.


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    activity, confrontation, alliance, infrastructure, bilateral relations, arms race, military, NATO, Alexander Grushko, Russia
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