Ukraine: NATO Deploys Additional Air, Land And Sea Forces To The East

Poppy Bilderbeck

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Ukraine: NATO Deploys Additional Air, Land And Sea Forces To The East

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) is strengthening its land, sea and air forces across Eastern Europe.

This morning, Russian president Vladimir Putin ordered an invasion of Ukraine, sending troops across the border in Kharkiv and ordering a series of missile strikes on Kyiv and other sites.

The EU is set to impose the 'strongest, harshest package' of sanctions ever implemented on Russia, and a number of allies have already revealed plans to deploy troops in support of NATO members in the vicinity of Ukraine.

While it stated this morning, February 24, that it would not launch any military action in support of the country, political and military defensive alliance NATO announced it had 'increased the readiness of [its] forces to respond to all contingencies' and plans to strengthen its deployments in eastern Europe.

Calling Russia's attack on Ukraine, 'horrifying' and 'entirely unjustified and unprovoked,' NATO said that it's 'thoughts are with those killed and injured, and with the people of Ukraine'.

'We stand with the people of Ukraine and its legitimate, democratically elected president, parliament and government. We will always maintain our full support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders, including its territorial waters.

'NATO will continue to take all necessary measures to ensure the security and defence of all Allies. We are deploying additional defensive land and air forces to the eastern part of the Alliance, as well as additional maritime assets. We have increased the readiness of our forces to respond to all contingencies.'

Calling on Russia to 'immediately cease its military action and withdraw all its forces from in and around Ukraine' NATO warned that Russia 'will pay a very heavy economic and political price' and that alliance 'will continue to coordinate closely with relevant stakeholders and other international organisations including the EU.'

On January 24, Denmark, Spain, France, the Netherlands and the US expressed their plans to ramp up their support and military involvement in support of Ukraine, per NATO's earlier statement.

France, Spain, the UK and the US are just four of 30 different countries who are members of NATO.

The organisation is both a political and military alliance that seeks to 'prevent conflict' and is 'committed to the peaceful resolution of disputes'. 'If diplomatic efforts fail, it has the military power to undertake crisis-management operations,' its website states.

Prior to 2014, there were no NATO forces in the the eastern part of the alliance.

However, after illegal invasion and annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation in 2014, NATO's presence was increased, including within Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland.

If one ally of NATO is attacked, then it is deemed as being seen 'as an attack on the whole Alliance'.

There are more than 100 air jets currently protecting NATO's airspace, according to Jens Stoltenberg, the Secretary General of NATO, Sky News reports.

The latest statement from NATO concluded: 'Today, we have held consultations under Article 4 of the Washington Treaty. We have decided, in line with our defensive planning to protect all Allies, to take additional steps to further strengthen deterrence and defence across the Alliance. Our measures are and remain preventive, proportionate and non-escalatory.

'Our commitment to Article 5 of the Washington Treaty is iron-clad. We stand united to defend each other.'

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Topics: News, UK News, Ukraine, Vladimir Putin, Russia

Poppy Bilderbeck
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