NATO mobilizes its rapid reaction force in response to Ukraine

2022-06-07 0 By

NATO is mobilizing its rapid reaction force to respond quickly if needed, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg announced after an emergency meeting of NATO leaders on The situation in Ukraine on Thursday.Stoltenberg said that NATO member states decided on The 24th to activate the defense program, according to the NATO rapid reaction force part of the land, sea and air force, but he did not explain where these troops will be deployed.The dPA news agency reported that ground troops could be sent to Romania.Stoltenberg also said that part of NATO’s rapid reaction Force will go to Norway for exercises, marking the first time that the force will be deployed within NATO for “deterrence” and “defense” purposes.France is preparing to send about 500 military personnel and armored vehicles to Romania as part of NATO’s military initiative to “send a clear signal of strategic unity,” Thierry Burkhardt, chief of staff of the French army, said in an interview with French media on Thursday.”In view of the fighting in Ukraine,” France plans to maintain a military presence in Estonia, a NATO member bordering Ukraine, after March with 200 to 250 troops and armored vehicles, he said.German Chancellor Olaf Scholz told the NATO meeting that Russia’s military action calls for an increased troop presence in the alliance’s eastern European members.NATO said the troop movements were “preventive, proportionate and non-escalation.”Formed in 2003, NATO’s Rapid Reaction Force now has 40,000 troops, comprising a “high response capability” force of land, air, sea and special operations forces.The United States and NATO have previously said they will not send troops into Ukraine to help fight the war because Ukraine is not a NATO member.However, several NATO members have provided arms to Ukraine and increased their military presence in eastern NATO countries.As NATO’s emergency meeting got under way, the first batch of extra British soldiers and military vehicles carrying weapons arrived at the Tapa military base in Estonia.In total, Britain plans to deploy more than 850 additional troops, roughly doubling its presence in Estonia.Italy said it was sending about 3,400 additional troops to NATO’s eastern members.Denmark has announced plans to deploy 20 more F-16 fighter jets.U.S. Defense Department spokesman John Kirby said Thursday that the United States will send an additional 7,000 troops to Germany this week, with some troops on standby at home.He said the type and size of U.S. forces sent to Europe depends on the specific needs of NATO.He also stressed that the rapid reaction force was deployed to protect NATO members, not to take part in a war in Ukraine.NATO has long ignored Russia’s security demands by beefing up troops on its eastern border in the name of defence.Russia says NATO’s continued eastward expansion and deployment of weapons threaten its national security and must stop.In December last year, Russia asked the US and NATO to provide legal guarantees to exclude the possibility of further eastward expansion of NATO, but the US and NATO failed to address Russia’s core security concerns in their response.(Shen Min) (Xinhua News Agency) Source: Xinhua News Agency