There are currently no signs that Russia is planning to invade any NATO country - NATO admiral

  • 2024-03-29
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - There are currently no indications that Russia is planning to invade any NATO country, Admiral Rob Bauer, Chairman of the NATO Military Committee, told reporters in Riga today.

"There is no indication that Russia is planning to attack any NATO member state. I do not think there is a direct threat. The problem is that Russia's ambitions go beyond Ukraine. We know that, so the Alliance as a whole needs to be more prepared," the Admiral said.

At the same time, the Alliance has agreed to consider Russia as a threat and, accordingly, the Alliance is changing its military plans, refocusing on collective defense. These plans were agreed at the NATO Summit in Vilnius and the work is about "making sure we can defend against the threat", Bauer said.

According to the Ukrainian experience, Russia does not attack directly and even before the large-scale invasion in February 2022, Russia supported separatists. Asked whether NATO would consider something like this a threat if something similar happened in one of the Baltic states, Bauer replied that according to Article 3 of the NATO Treaty, each state must be able to defend itself.

"If something like that were to happen in a country, then it is the responsibility of that country to take care of its security. If we are talking about hybrid operations, for example, Latvia will have to react to that. Of course, if Latvia wants to enter into consultations with other Member States, as provided for in Article 4, this is possible by presenting the identified threat. We would discuss this and we will agree on how we, as an alliance, will proceed. I would like to point out that cyber activity coming from another country is also sufficient to trigger Article 5. It is not only in the case of a direct attack that Article 5 can be triggered," Bauer stressed.

With the US presidential election coming up at the end of the year, the Admiral also confirmed that he was not afraid of Donald Trump's re-election. The Alliance has faced several challenges. Trump has not yet been elected, and it is evident that Trump's previous statements were not directed at NATO as a whole, but at the fact that some countries do not allocate enough funding to defense. At the same time, the member states of the alliance are already prepared to pay more for defense.