Monday

22nd Apr 2019

Nato chief defends alliance after Trump victory

  • Nato decided to deploy a Russia-deterrent force at a summit in Warsaw in July (Photo: nato.int)

Nato states had a “solemn” commitment to defend each other and the alliance was "important" for the US, Nato head Jens Stoltenberg has said in reaction to Donald Trump’s election as US president.

“Nato’s security guarantee is a treaty commitment. All allies have made a solemn commitment to defend each other. This is something which is unconditional and absolute”, he said in Brussels on Wednesday (9 November).

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

  • Stoltenberg: "Nato’s security guarantee is a treaty commitment" (Photo: Nato)

“Nato’s security guarantees are important for Europe, but they are also important for the United States”, he said.

He recalled that the only time the alliance had invoked its Article 5 mutual defence clause was to help the US after 9/11 in 2001.

He noted that Nato soldiers from Europe and Canada continued to support US-led campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq.

He also invoked the history of transatlantic ties, saying Nato had “brought together America's closest friends in times of peace and in times of conflict for almost 70 years”.

Trump, who swept to victory on Tuesday, said during his campaign that the US would only protect Nato allies who were prepared to pay more for their own defence.

He has also praised Russian leader Vladimir Putin, amid Nato plans to deploy a Russia-deterrent force, with a large US component, in the Baltic and Black Sea regions next year.

When asked in Wednesday’s press briefing if Trump’s win would change that plan, Stoltenberg said “we have made important decisions, we are implementing those decisions”.

He also said there was agreement in Nato that it had to challenge “hybrid threats”, a term commonly used for Russia’s mix of covert military, economic, and information warfare.

Stoltenberg, a former Norwegian prime minister, said he “looked forward” to meeting Trump “soon”.

He has, in the past, also complained that Nato states were not living up to promises to increase military budgets.

Stoltenberg spoke in Brussels after meeting Bosnian president Bakir Izetbegovic.

With Bosnia aspiring to join the alliance, Stoltenberg said Nato membership meant “greater security and greater prosperity”.

“Nato is and remains committed to stability in the Western Balkans”, he said.

Feature

What would a Trump victory mean for the EU?

A Trump win would cause cold sweats in Europe's chancelleries, but his foreign policy might not be as radical or as pro-Russian as his rhetoric.

Trump and Erdogan haunt Nato meeting

Kerry sought to allay fears that Trump will abandon Nato, saying the president-elect is already "revising" many of his campaign ideas.

Opinion

With Trump, this might not be fine

If the Trump’s administration doesn't turn out to be perfectly benign, being ready is what will stand between Europe and a geopolitical disaster of proportions unseen since 1945.

EU migrants sneaking into US from Mexico

Almost 1,000 Romanian nationals were caught trying to sneak into the United States in 2017, of which around half attempted to cross via Mexico. Nationals from countries like Hungary and the UK were also intercepted.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Counter BalanceSign the petition to help reform the EU’s Bank
  2. UNICEFChild rights organisations encourage candidates for EU elections to become Child Rights Champions
  3. UNESDAUNESDA Outlines 2019-2024 Aspirations: Sustainability, Responsibility, Competitiveness
  4. Counter BalanceRecord citizens’ input to EU bank’s consultation calls on EIB to abandon fossil fuels
  5. International Partnership for Human RightsAnnual EU-Turkmenistan Human Rights Dialogue takes place in Ashgabat
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNew campaign: spot, capture and share Traces of North
  7. Nordic Council of MinistersLeading Nordic candidates go head-to-head in EU election debate
  8. Nordic Council of MinistersNew Secretary General: Nordic co-operation must benefit everybody
  9. Platform for Peace and JusticeMEP Kati Piri: “Our red line on Turkey has been crossed”
  10. UNICEF2018 deadliest year yet for children in Syria as war enters 9th year
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic commitment to driving global gender equality
  12. International Partnership for Human RightsMeet your defender: Rasul Jafarov leading human rights defender from Azerbaijan

Latest News

  1. Romania drafts EU code on NGO migrant rescues
  2. Bulgaria, Hungary, and Malta shamed on press unfreedom
  3. EU drafts $20bn US sanctions list in aviation dispute
  4. Brunei defends stoning to death of gay men in EU letter
  5. US Democrats side with Ireland on Brexit
  6. Wifi or 5G to connect EU cars? MEPs weigh in
  7. How Brexit may harm the new EU parliament
  8. EU parliament backs whistleblower law

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us