NATO could take new decisions if Russia ups military activity: Polish FM

Russian T-90 Main Battle Tanks

NATO will likely respond with new decisions – further to those taken to bolster its eastern flank last year – should Russia increase military activity, Poland’s foreign minister told the wPolityce portal.

At a summit in Warsaw last year, NATO decided to send four multinational battle battalion groups, each around 1,000 strong, to Poland and three Baltic countries which feared Russian aggression following Moscow’s annexation of Crimea.

“For today that number is enough,” Polish Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski was cited by wPolityce as saying. He added: “It is a (military) presence … to deter any conflict similar in intensity … to what we dealt with in Crimea”.

“But if there is an escalation in Russia’s behaviour then NATO will probably take new decisions”.

The article in wPolityce came after a detailed interview with Waszczykowski was publishied in Russian daily Kommersant.

Waszczykowski told the Russian paper that “neighbouring Russia is difficult because of military threat, provocation in the Baltic and Black Seas”.

Witold Waszczykowski

“But on the other hand it is a promising neighbour, Russia is a huge market,” he told Kommersant.

“If a democratic government ready to work with the European Union were in power in Russia, it would be ideal for us. But, unfortunately, the current rulers in Moscow have imperial ambitions, are undermining international order, questioning the need for NATOs existence, and trying to build new security architecture”.

In the interview for Kommersant, which a number of Russian media outlets commented on, Waszczykowski also discussed gas, as Warsaw seeks to reduce its energy dependency on Russia, a new Polish law to remove monuments to Soviet soldiers from public spaces, and a possible meeting with his Russian counterpart. (vb/pk)

 

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