NATO has agreed on a defense plan in the event of a Russian attack on one of the alliance’s countries, five diplomats told Reuters.
The agency’s interlocutors said that a day before the start of the NATO summit in Vilnius, they managed to overcome Turkey’s blockage, which had previously prevented the alliance from agreeing on the plan. Ankara “had to compromise”, one of Reuters’ sources said. For the alliance, however, everything went “wonderfully well”, he added.
NATO has for decades seen no need for a contingency plan in the event of an attack, but now the bloodiest war in Europe since World War II is taking place near the alliance’s borders in Ukraine. The bloc’s countries have concluded that they need to prepare for a possible confrontation with Russia long before hostilities begin.
The plan in case of a Russian attack is a thousands-page document that spells out actions in case it is necessary to defend against an invasion by the Russian army, Reuters wrote earlier. The arrangements include both troop reinforcements and logistics, and their implementation could take several years.
“Allies will know exactly what forces and capabilities are needed, where, what and how to deploy”, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said earlier, commenting on the preparation of the documents.
Moreover, NATO countries are preparing to quadruple their military presence near Russia’s borders, The New York Times reported. According to the newspaper, the alliance will increase the number of forces in 8 countries of the “eastern flank” to almost 40 thousand people.
Now the combat groups deployed in the east of NATO, totaling just over 10 thousand military personnel. Following the summit in Vilnius, the leaders of the bloc should approve the decision to increase their number to 4-5 thousand in each of the countries (32-40 thousand people in total). In particular, Germany will transfer an additional 4,000 Bundeswehr soldiers to Lithuania for permanent deployment, and Canada – 1.2 thousand military personnel to Latvia.