News ID: 322589
Published: 0256 GMT June 27, 2022

NATO to boost high readiness forces to 300,000

NATO to boost high readiness forces to 300,000

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg speaks during a media conference prior to a NATO summit in Brussels on June 27, 2022.

NATO allies will boost high readiness forces to "well over 300,000" troops as they strengthen their defences in response to Russia's military operation in Ukraine, alliance chief Jens Stoltenberg said Monday.

Leaders from the US-led military alliance will meet in Madrid this week for what Stoltenberg said would be a "transformative" summit as it grapples with the fallout of Moscow's operation in Ukraine, according to AFP.

Stoltenberg said allies would bolster some of their battle group deployments along NATO's eastern flank "up to brigade level" – tactical units of several thousand troops – and ratchet up high readiness numbers to "well over 300,000".

In addition, more heavy weaponry, including air defence systems, would be shifted forwards and forces pre-assigned to defend specific NATO members on the alliance's exposed eastern edge.

"This constitutes the biggest overhaul of our collective defence and deterrence since the Cold War," Stoltenberg said.

Over the long term, Stoltenberg said allies aim to help Ukraine transition from Soviet-era armaments to modern NATO equipment.

Stoltenberg did not give further details of the additional high readiness forces or how they could be deployed by the alliance.

NATO currently has a high readiness force of around 40,000 troops under its command.






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