BRUSSELS (Sputnik) — Commenting on the position of US President Donald Trump on Russia, Hennis-Plasschaert told reporters that NATO and Russia used to have friendly relations for a long time, but the situation could not stay the same due to a series of recent events, referring to Crimea’s reunification with Russia and Moscow's alleged involvement in the conflict in Ukraine.
Since 2014, relations between Russia and the European Union and the United States, deteriorated amid the crisis in Ukraine. Brussels, Washington and their allies introduced several rounds of sanctions against Russia on the pretext of its alleged involvement in the Ukrainian conflict, which Moscow has repeatedly denied. In response to the restrictive measures, Russia has imposed a food embargo on some products originating in countries that have targeted it with sanctions.
Since then, NATO has been building up its military presence in Europe, particularly in eastern European countries bordering Russia, using Moscow's alleged interference in Ukraine as a pretext.