NATO’s nuclear deterrence “effective” - Stoltenberg
That’s according to NATO Secretary General, who spoke at a press conference in Brussels following a two-day NATO defense ministerial, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.
Any use of nuclear weapons by Russia in Ukraine will have serious consequences but NATO will not spell out exactly how it would respond, the alliance’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said on Thursday.
“It will have severe consequences if Russia uses any kind of nuclear weapon against Ukraine,” Stoltenberg told reporters.
“We will not go into how exactly we will respond but of course this will fundamentally change the nature of the conflict. It will mean that a very important line has been crossed. Even any use of a smaller nuclear weapon will be a very serious thing, changing the nature of the war in Ukraine.”
Stoltenberg said NATO would remain “very vigilant” in the coming weeks as Russia holds its own nuclear drills.
“Allies had a regular meeting of the nuclear planning group. It is important we continue to consult and coordinate on nuclear issues. President Putin's nuclear rhetoric is dangerous and irresponsible. We take we take this stretch seriously and we remain vigilant. We will not be intimidated. Any use of nuclear weapons would fundamentally change the nature of the conflict and have severe consequences,” Stoltenberg said.
Russia knows that the nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought, Stoltenberg stated. Allies will hold next week NATO's long planned deterrence exercise to ensure NATO's nuclear capabilities remain safe, secure and effective.
“NATO's nuclear deterrence pursues peace, prevents coercion and terrorist aggression,” Stoltenberg said.
As Ukrinform reported earlier, Brussels hosted on October 12-13 a meeting of the North Atlantic Council at the level of defense ministers. The Ukraine Defense Contact Group (the Ramstein format) met on Wednesday, October 12 on the initiative of U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, with the participation of Ukraine’s defense chief Oleksii Reznikov.
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