In an interview with Britain’s The Telegraph, Stoltenberg said NATO was not interested in participating in arms races. “At the same time, however, we must be sure that we can adapt to developments in the world and not leave Russia’s behavior unanswered,” the secretary said.
He spoke, among other things, about the case of Alexei Navalny. Already last week, in a private meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Stoltenberg learned that the opposition leader was apparently poisoned.
NATO’s chief of staff later said, following extraordinary talks with the ambassadors of Alliance member states, that novice poisoning was an unacceptable violation of international law and must be investigated independently.
“Russia must now answer some very important questions. How is it possible that opposition leaders and critics of the regime are repeatedly the target of attacks in the country? This is not the first case and it makes the whole thing even more serious, “said Stoltenberg, who wished Navalna a speedy recovery from a distance.
In an interview with current events, Stoltenberg also reflected on the Cold War, which took place in the second half of the last century.
“The situation is somewhat different, because then there were two armed blocs that stood against each other. Europe was then divided, today we are witnessing another ideological conflict. Nevertheless, we see Russia being aggressive towards its neighbors and trying to restore its influence in certain places, ”said Stoltenberg.
“We have seen it in Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The situation requires a NATO response, which is why we are introducing the greatest strengthening of collective defense since the end of the Cold War. After years of reducing defense costs, countries are now increasing spending and upgrading our equipment. We react defensively and appropriately. We don’t want a new Cold War, “Stoltenberg added.