General Sir Adrian Bradshaw, NATO deputy supreme allied commander in Europe, told members of the press in Riga on April 29 that Article 5 of the NATO Treaty is “set in stone,” but added that there must be a balance when enhancing the alliance's presence in the Baltic region, so as not to provoke a counter-reaction from Russia.
The general said that he has arrived in Latvia to discuss NATO's reaction to the changes in the security situation in the alliance's eastern regions. ''I can assure you that NATO's Article 5 is set in stone, and we have plans and the capability to react accordingly if necessary,'' Bradshaw emphasized.
Asked whether NATO could enhance its presence in the Baltic region even more, the general repeated what has been said previously - air defense capabilities have been enhanced, a larger naval presence has been established, and various military exercises will be held. He added that NATO must also ensure a balance in its activities, so not to provoke a counter-reaction.
Meanwhile, National Armed Forces Commander Raimonds Graube emphasized to members of the press that the general's visit is yet another sign that NATO is serious in regard to the security situation on its eastern borders. He added that he and the general will speak about further cooperation and what steps will be made to strengthen security in the region.
During General Bradshaw’s visit on April 29, he was scheduled to meet with Defense Minister Raimonds Vejonis and National Armed Forces Commander Raimonds Graube.
The visit to Latvia is taking place at a time when NATO is enhancing its presence in the Baltic Sea region.