NATO leaders in Madrid labeled Russia a threat to their security during the summit on Wednesday, with alliance’s chief Jens Stoltenberg saying that NATO will “state clearly that Russia poses a direct threat to our security,” as the alliance seeks to upgrade its defense response, by strengthening its eastern flank, given the ongoing war in Ukraine.
Stoltenberg stated that the summit in Madrid is considered “historic and transformative”, adding that the leaders “meet in the midst of the most serious security crisis we have faced since the Second World War.”
Aside from Russia, NATO also seeks to focus on China as it claims that Beijing posed grave challenges to the alliance the more it invests in new modern military capabilities. The NATO chief emphasizes that “China’s not an adversary,” but rather a challenge that is to be written down onto the updated version of NATO guiding “strategic concept.”
As a sign of commitment to the changes written down in the “strategic concept”, Stoltenberg announced that the leaders of partners South Korea and Japan will attend a NATO summit for the first time.
It is worth mentioning that the wording of the “strategic concept” has been difficult to agree upon amongst the NATO allies, according to sources that preferred to remain anonymous, especially since the US has been seeking to take a tough stance while Germany, a country that has extensive economic and trade ties with China, has been seeking a more moderate lexicon.
The NATO Strategic Concept is the organization’s key document, in which member countries reaffirm NATO’s values and purpose, provide a collective assessment of the security environment, define security challenges and measures to address them, and outline guidelines for the alliance’s future political and military development.
Earlier this month, in an interview with the German newspaper Bild, Stoltenberg stressed that “we will declare that Russia is no longer a partner, but a threat to our security, to peace and stability.” previously, Russia has been mentioned as a partner in the “strategic concept” however, NATO claims that the Ukraine operation triggered them to consider Russia a high-risk threat.
Source: Agencies (edited by Al-Manar English Website)