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9 Dec, 2021 23:55

Biden promises more ‘military capabilities’ on eastern NATO flank – official

Biden promises more ‘military capabilities’ on eastern NATO flank – official

Joe Biden has pledged “additional military capabilities” for NATO’s easternmost members, a Lithuanian presidential adviser said following talks between the US president and regional leaders.

The US president held phone talks with the leaders of the Bucharest Nine group on Thursday. The organization brings together eastern European countries, including Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, and Bulgaria.

During the talks, which lasted around 45 minutes, the US leader pledged “additional military capabilities” for the region’s NATO members, Asta Skaisgiryte, foreign policy adviser for Lithuania’s president, told reporters.

“He said additional reassurance elements are possible in these countries, and additional military capabilities,” the official said, adding that the US leader has not elaborated on a possible location or exact details on the additional NATO military buildup.

“No country was specifically named. However, it can be understood that it is in the eastern flank of NATO,” she stated.

The US president also briefed the Bucharest Nine leaders on his talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin, which largely revolved around Ukraine. Biden also assured the region’s leaders that he would never make any deals involving the eastern European countries behind their backs, according to Skaisgiryte. 

The US president told the leaders that “nothing has been said about you without you,” the official added.

Washington, however, has not shed any light on the potential “additional military capabilities” for NATO’s eastern members so far. The White House released a brief readout of the talks, stating only that Biden underscored the US “commitment to Transatlantic security and our sacred commitment to NATO’s Article 5” during the meeting.