01:58 GMT +322 October 2019
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    Trump's Administration 'Leaning' to Back Montenegro's NATO Accession

    © AFP 2019 / OLIVIER MORIN
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    The administration of US President Donald Trump is tending to support the Montenegro's NATO membership despite Russia's objections, US media reported.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that the National Security Council was considering the issue that could cause tensions in US relations with Russia that has repeatedly criticized the move but the White House was "leaning" to approve the membership of the Balkan state in the Alliance.

    The news outlet added that a senior official from Trump's administration said that there were barely "a lot of opposition" to the issue of Montenegro's NATO accession.

    The Balkan state was invited to become NATO's 29th member in 2015. In May 2016, the Alliance member states signed a protocol on Podgorica's accession, which should be ratified by all 28 NATO member states to allow Montenegro become a full-fledged member.

    At the moment, the protocol has been ratified by 23 member states, while Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and the United States has not finalized the move. In January, the Foreign Relations Committee of the US Senate has supported the Montenegrin membership in the Alliance, however the Senate should vote on the issue.

    Moscow has repeatedly criticized the Alliance’s extension, which has resulted in multiple military exercises in the vicinity of the Russian borders.

    Tags:
    Trump administration, NATO, Donald Trump, Montenegro
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