Russia To Alter Military Strategy

russiaRussia is to alter its military strategy as a result of the Ukraine crisis and Nato’s presence in eastern Europe, a top Russian official says.

Mikhail Popov, a Kremlin adviser, said that deteriorating relations with the US and Nato would be reflected in the updated strategy.

Nato said on Monday it would boost its presence in eastern Europe to protect its members.

Ukrainian troops are battling pro-Russian rebels in east Ukraine.

About 2,600 people have died since fighting began in April.

Ukraine’s defence minister on Monday accused Russia of launching a “great war” that could claim tens of thousands of lives – claims dismissed by Russia, which denies actively supporting the rebels.

Mr Popov, deputy secretary of Russia’s National Security Council, told Russia’s RIA news agency that “the military infrastructure of Nato member states” was “getting closer to [Russian] borders, including via enlargement”.

Nato’s actions were one of the key “external threats” to Russia, he said.

“Nato’s planned action… is evidence of the desire of US and Nato leaders to continue their policy of aggravating tensions with Russia”, Mr Popov said.

There were no details on how the doctrine might change.

Nato announced its plans on Monday for a rapid response force of several thousand troops to protect eastern European members against possible Russian aggression.

The force, to be made up of troops provided by member states on a rotating basis, would be able to be deployed within 48 hours, Nato secretary general Anders Fogh Rasmussen said.

Military equipment and supplies would be pre-positioned in member states in the east so the force could “travel light, but strike hard if needed”, he added.

Mr Rasmussen insisted that the plans would not breach the 1997 Nato-Russia Founding Act, which forbids the presence of permanent bases in eastern and central Europe.

The new measures are set to be approved at a Nato summit in Wales this week.

The Nato security alliance covers 28 member states, including Eastern European countries such as Poland and the Czech Republic. It does not include Ukraine. 




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