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Updated February 12th, 2024 at 17:38 IST

NATO Cannot Be Dependent On ‘Whims’ of US President: EU's Borrell

2024 GOP frontrunner created firestorm as he suggested that he would “encourage” Russia to attack any NATO member state.

Digital Desk
US Trump Borrell NATO Russia
EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, ex US Presdient Donald Trump and NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg. | Image:AP
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After former US President, Donald Trump, suggested that the United States will not protect NATO military alliance from Russian attack as the member states do not meet their financial obligations, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said that NATO “cannot be an alliance a la carte.”

The 2024 GOP frontrunner created a firestorm as he suggested that he would “encourage” Russia to attack any NATO member state for not contributing enough towards the funding. Trump downplayed his commitment to NATO’s security umbrella in Europe, stoking fears about what would happen if he became the US President again.

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During a campaign speech Saturday in Conway, South Carolina, Trump said that Russia can do whatever it wants as NATO countries were lagging behind in their monetary commitment.  "NATO was busted until I came along," Trump said. "I said, ‘Everybody’s gonna pay.' They said, ‘Well, if we don’t pay, are you still going to protect us?' I said, 'Absolutely not.' They couldn't believe the answer.” On question of whether America would protect its allies, Trump said, "No, I would not protect you," Trump recalled telling that country's leader. "In fact, I would encourage them to do whatever the hell they want. You got to pay. You got to pay your bills.”

Not for US to decide if NATO ‘exists or it does not exist’: Stoltenberg

“Let’s be serious. NATO cannot be an a la carte military alliance, it cannot be a military alliance that works depending on the humour of the president of the US day to day,” Borrell said, according to reports. He added that US cannot decide whether the alliance “exists or it does not exist.” Borrell added that he cannot comment on the “silly idea” propelled by the former US president.

During his tenure, Trump threatened to pull out of NATO, having torpedoed the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, and the Paris climate accord. Biden, who reinstated US participation in such agreements, called Trump’s  remarks as “appalling and dangerous.” Reacting to the 77 year old’s remarks, NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg said that “any suggestion that allies will not defend each other undermines all of our security, including that of the US.” He added, that Russia’s attack on the member states will be met with a “united and forceful response."

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Published February 12th, 2024 at 17:38 IST

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