12:30 GMT +313 December 2017
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    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg speaks during a media conference at NATO headquarters in Brussels

    NATO Welcomes Pentagon’s Plans to Drastically Reinforce Presence in Europe

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    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that the enhanced spending will provide for more rotational US forces, drills, infrastructure and battle gear.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg expressed Tuesday his support for the US plans to drastically strengthen its military presence in Europe.

    Earlier in the day, US Secretary of Defense Aston Carter said Washington would quadruple its funding to support the US posture in Europe, to reach $3.4 billion in 2017.

    “I strongly welcome this proposal,” Stoltenberg said, adding that the move symbolizes the United State's enduring commitment to European security.

    According to Stoltenberg, the enhanced spending will provide for more rotational US forces, drills, infrastructure and battle gear.

    The United States and NATO have been building up their combined military presence in Europe, particularly in Eastern European countries bordering Russia, using Russia's alleged interference in Ukraine as a pretext for the move.

    Moscow has repeatedly stressed it is not a party to the Ukrainian conflict, and that military expansion toward Russia's borders increases tensions by threatening regional and international security.

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    NATO, Ashton Carter, Jens Stoltenberg, United States
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