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NATO Holds Russia ‘Accountable’ for Crimes, Tells China To Refrain from Supporting Russia

March 24, 2022 (EIRNS)—The summit meeting of the leaders of NATO’s 30 members countries ended today with a statement declaring that the alliance would hold Russia “accountable” for the “crimes” it is committing in Ukraine. NATO also promised to give even more support to the regime in Kiev. Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy addressed the meeting by video.

The NATO statement said “We call on President Putin to immediately stop this war and withdraw military forces from Ukraine, and call on Belarus to end its complicity....” It also claimed that “ Russia’s attack on Ukraine threatens global security. Its assault on international norms makes the world less safe. President Putin’s escalatory rhetoric is irresponsible and destabilizing....

“We stand in full solidarity with President Zelenskyy, the government of Ukraine, and with the brave Ukrainian citizens who are defending their homeland..... Ukraine has a fundamental right to self-defense under the United Nations Charter....  NATO Allies have stepped up their support and will continue to provide further political and practical support to Ukraine as it continues to defend itself.  NATO Allies will also continue to provide assistance in such areas as cybersecurity and protection against threats of a chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear nature.”

The statement also made a shot across the bow at China, calling on Beijing “to uphold the international order including the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity, as enshrined in the UN Charter, to abstain from supporting Russia’s war effort in any way, and to refrain from any action that helps Russia circumvent sanctions. We are concerned by recent public comments by PRC officials and call on China to cease amplifying the Kremlin’s false narratives, in particular on the war and on NATO, and to promote a peaceful resolution to the conflict....

“We reaffirm our commitment to NATO’s Open Door Policy under Article 10 of the Washington Treaty,” the statement declared, referring mainly to Sweden and Finland as Stoltenberg basically admitted yesterday that membership for Ukraine is not now on the table.

“The steps we are taking to ensure the security of our Alliance and of the Euro-Atlantic area will require adequate resourcing,” meaning increased defense spending. In line with the NATO treaty, the allies “will further strengthen our individual and collective capacity to resist all forms of attack. At our meeting in Madrid, we will submit additional plans on how to meet the Pledge.”

The White House followed with its own statement reporting that, “We had the privilege of hearing directly from President Zelenskyy, and we will continue to support him and his government with significant, and increasing, amounts of security assistance to fight Russian aggression and uphold their right to self-defense.”

After repeating elements of what was already in the NATO statement, Biden concluded: “Between now and the NATO summit in June, we will develop plans for additional forces and capabilities to strengthen NATO’s defenses. We will adopt an updated Strategic Concept to ensure NATO is ready to meet any challenge in the new and more dangerous security environment.”

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