NATO Joins the Navalny Show
Sept. 4, 2020 (EIRNS)—The North Atlantic Council met this morning at which the German representative briefed the alliance on the alleged poisoning of Russian opposition figure Alexey Navalny. Afterwards, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg appeared before a handful of reporters to declare: “There is proof beyond doubt that Mr. Navalny was poisoned using a military-grade nerve agent from the Novichok group.”
“NATO Allies agree that Russia now has serious questions it must answer,” Stoltenberg went on. The Russian government must cooperate with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in an impartial investigation as well as provide a complete disclosure of its Novichok program. “Those responsible for this attack must be held accountable and brought to justice,” he said.
When asked why NATO should be concerned about an attack that did not occur on NATO territory, Stoltenberg replied that “Because this is a violation of international law and international norms. It’s a use of a chemical weapon. It’s a use of a chemical nerve agent, which is violating the prohibition of any use of chemical weapons.” Beyond that, it was not just an attack on an individual but an attack on democracy as well, he claimed.
As for how NATO will respond, Stoltenberg said that Alliance members are still consulting. “We strongly believe that this is a blatant violation of international law, so it requires an international response,” he said. “But I will not now speculate about exactly what kind of international response.”