NATO asks allies to increase budgets for their armies
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1 year ago
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NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and US Ambassador to NATO Julianne Smith said on June 7 that financing the military alliance will be one of the main topics of the upcoming summit in Vilnius, along with enlargement of the alliance and security guarantees.

Smith and Stoltenberg, participating in a virtual conference sponsored by the Center for a New American Security, said members will discuss the threshold for spending at least 2 percent of NATO member countries' gross domestic product on defense. , writes REL.

Smith pledged that the US will continue to press to ensure that members spend at least 2 percent of their gross domestic product on defense, as agreed in the Defense Investment Pledge (DIP). of 2014, which requires countries to meet the 2 percent threshold by 2024.

In addition, Smith said that 2 percent "is a threshold, not a ceiling" and that future NATO plans may require further increases to this threshold.

The United States is "planning to bring a DIP 2.0" to the summit, Smith said, pushing NATO allies to meet and exceed the 2 percent threshold within the next few years.

The leaders of the 31 NATO countries, who will gather on July 11 and 12 in the Lithuanian capital, are also expected to hold critical talks on the future of NATO, related to a possible expansion.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who has pressured NATO to allow his country to join, is expected to attend the summit. He said earlier this week that Ukraine is "ready to join" and that the alliance should make a decision on Ukraine's membership at this summit.

Regarding possible NATO expansion, Smith and Stoltenberg made it clear that there is a wide range of potential models for NATO's continued contribution to Ukraine, but that the solution is likely to be a compromise between differing opinions. of NATO allies.

"We are looking at a number of options to signal that Ukraine is making progress in its relationship with NATO," Smith said.

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