Explainer-What are NATO’s next steps if Russia invades Ukraine?

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BRUSSELS (Reuters) – NATO allies are placing forces on standby https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/nato-sends-ships-jets-eastern-europe-ukraine-crisis-2022-01-24 and sending reinforcements to jap Europe in response to Russia’s buildup of greater than 100,000 troops on Ukraine’s borders.

Here are among the dilemmas about NATO’s next steps.

WILL NATO COME TO UKRAINE’S DEFENCE?

Not militarily. Ukraine isn’t a member of NATO and the alliance isn’t treaty-bound to defend it. U.S. President Joe Biden https://www.reuters.com/world/us/biden-says-putting-us-troops-ground-ukraine-is-not-table-2021-12-08 has stated he won’t ship American or allied troops to combat Russia in Ukraine.

However, Kyiv is an in depth accomplice and was promised eventual membership of the alliance at a NATO summit in 2008.

For the second, the 30-member North Atlantic Treaty Organisation is working with Ukraine to modernise its armed forces. Canada operates a coaching programme in Ukraine, whereas Denmark can also be stepping up efforts to deliver Ukraine’s army as much as NATO requirements. The alliance has additionally stated it would assist Ukraine defend in opposition to cyber assaults https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/us-offers-ukraine-support-needed-recover-cyberattack-2022-01-14 and is offering safe communications gear for army command.

WHAT ABOUT ARMING UKRAINE?

The United States, Britain and the Baltic states are sending weapons to Ukraine, together with anti-tank missiles, small arms and boats. Turkey has offered drones to Ukraine that the Ukrainian army has utilized in jap Ukraine in opposition to Russian-backed separatists.

However, Germany is in opposition to sending arms to Ukraine. Berlin has as an alternative promised a whole area hospital and the mandatory coaching for Ukrainian troops to function it, value about $6 million.

SO WHY IS NATO PUTTING FORCES ON STANDBY?

The alliance https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/best-supporting-actor-nato-secondary-role-if-russia-invades-ukraine-2022-01-18 is anxious a few potential spillover from any battle between Russia and Ukraine, notably within the Black Sea area, the place Russia annexed Crimea in 2014, and within the Baltic Sea.

The U.S. Department of Defense has put about 8,500 American troops on heightened alert. Denmark is sending a frigate to the Baltic Sea and 4 F-16 warplanes to Lithuania. Spain has despatched a minesweeper and a frigate to hitch NATO naval forces within the Mediterranean and the Black Sea.

Madrid can also be contemplating sending fighter jets to Bulgaria, whereas the Netherlands has additionally provided two F-35 warplanes to Bulgaria from April.

France could ship troops to Romania underneath NATO command.

WHY ARE ALLIES NOT MOVING MORE QUICKLY?

Russia says it has no intention of invading Ukraine.

NATO, which is each a political and army organisation, has provided extra talks with Moscow within the format of the NATO-Russia Council in Brussels to discover a resolution.

Moreover, as an alliance of 30 nations with completely different priorities, selections are taken collectively and it might probably take time to drum up the mandatory troops for joint missions.

NATO allies are discussing whether or not to extend the variety of troops rotating via jap Europe. They will deal with the difficulty when allied defence ministers meet for a scheduled assembly in Brussels in mid-February.

NATO has 4 multinational battalion-size battlegroups, or some 4,000 troopers, led by Canada, Germany, Britain and the United States in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Poland.

The troops function a “journey wire” for NATO’s 40,000-strong response drive to return in rapidly and convey extra U.S. troops and weapons from throughout the Atlantic.

The greatest selections could not come till June, when NATO leaders are on account of meet for a summit in Madrid. They are anticipated to agree a brand new grasp plan, known as a Strategic Concept, partially to cement NATO’s deal with deterring Russia.

WHAT IS NATO LIKELY TO DO IN THE BLACK SEA?

Bulgaria’s authorities has stated it is able to get up a 1,000-strong drive within the nation, underneath Bulgarian command and in shut cooperation with NATO, probably with some troopers from different allied nations.

It may very well be shaped by April or May.

The Western alliance has a multinational land drive of as much as 4,000 troops in Romania. The United States additionally has troopers stationed at separate bases in Romania and in Bulgaria.

Romania may see an even bigger NATO presence, after France provided extra troops. Romania is in talks with the United States over rising troop numbers on its soil.

Although operational since 2017, the multinational drive in Romania stays solely a land command, with out fast air, maritime or particular forces.

(Additional reporting by Tsvetelia Tsolova and Luiza Ilie, Editing by Timothy Heritage)



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