NATO director unveils biggest risk for bloc

(MENAFN) Outgoing NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has underscored the existential threat posed by a potential Russian victory in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, labeling it as the single greatest risk facing the United States-led military alliance. Speaking at the NATO leaders summit held in Washington, Stoltenberg emphasized that the outcome of the Moscow-Kiev conflict would significantly shape global security dynamics for decades to come.

During his address commemorating NATO's 75th anniversary, Stoltenberg warned against the repercussions of a Russian triumph, stating unequivocally, "The biggest cost and the greatest risk will be if Russia wins in Ukraine; we cannot let that happen." He expressed concerns that a Russian victory would embolden other adversaries of NATO, such as Iran, North Korea, and China, all of whom are supportive of Moscow and have vested interests in seeing NATO's influence diminish.

While acknowledging the high stakes involved in the Ukraine conflict, Stoltenberg notably refrained from addressing Ukraine's aspirations to join NATO, a contentious issue that has been a focal point of geopolitical tensions. Ukraine has consistently sought accelerated accession to the alliance, arguing that its ongoing struggle with Russia justifies expedited membership. However, NATO leadership and member states have maintained a cautious stance, asserting that Ukraine's path to membership hinges on various geopolitical factors, including the resolution of hostilities with Russia.

In response to the escalating conflict, Stoltenberg highlighted NATO's commitment to bolstering support for Ukraine, aligning with United States President Joe Biden's announcement at the summit. Biden reaffirmed NATO's pledge to provide Kiev with additional tactical air-defense missile systems in the coming months, underscoring the alliance's strategic commitment to fortifying Ukraine's defense capabilities amidst ongoing tensions with Russia.

Stoltenberg's remarks underscored NATO's resolve to confront the formidable challenges posed by Russian aggression in Ukraine, emphasizing the pivotal role of collective defense and international solidarity in safeguarding regional stability and global security interests.



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