NATO leaders will meet in Brussels for a summit on Monday (June 14th) to reorient the alliance after its identity crisis in recent years. The meeting is sandwiched between the G7 summit in Britain and an EU-US summit.
The questions are important: how to respond to an assertive Russia and China? What to do about the rogue member Turkey? How to deepen EU-NATO relations? What to do about climate change? EURACTIV has seen a draft summit press release. Here is what we know.
Monday’s summit is expected to adopt a series of documents: a traditional joint summit communiquÃ©, this time of around 40 pages, as well as a NATO reform agenda to 2030. In a separate document, the leaders agree on how to strengthen NATO’s resilience to emerging threats and on a new action plan on climate change and security. NATO’s cyber defense policy will also be reviewed.
Russia – China
As EURACTIV reported on Friday, Biden’s top political priority, China, will have much stronger language than it has ever had before, with leaders expected to point out “the growing divergences between Beijing’s coercive policies and our values”.
Diplomatic sources told EURACTIV that while Washington pressed for strong wording, Europeans were more reluctant, calling Russia a “threat” and China more of a “challenge”, thus avoiding putting Moscow and Beijing in the same basket. .
However, 14 mostly ex-Soviet and Balkan members, who are closer to the American position, align themselves with Washington’s Chinese policy as they believe that only the United States could guarantee their security in the face of aggressive Russia, diplomatic sources said.
On Russia, NATO leaders should recognize that Moscow, “in addition to its military activities, has also demonstrated a pattern of hybrid actions against NATO allies and partners, including through proxies. “.
The leaders’ statement is expected to include a reference to increased consultations among allies and working towards greater accountability when it comes to internal conflicts.
“We pledge to strengthen consultations when the security or stability of an ally is threatened or when our fundamental values ââand principles are in danger,” he will probably say, without specifying an internal or external threat.
The passage does not specify whether these are external or internal threats, which would basically mean both. The escalating tensions between Turkey and Greece should be borne in mind.
Another paragraph should call on all foreign forces to withdraw from Libya, which Ankara has raised objections to because it wishes to maintain troops in the country, diplomatic sources said. While France opposed such a scenario, the American side remained ambiguous, apparently not to displease Turkey.
Deepening of EU-NATO relations / partnerships
NATO leaders will also underline their willingness to deepen dialogue and practical cooperation with Alliance partners, including the EU and those in the Indo-Pacific (Australia, Japan, New Zealand and Korea from South).
According to diplomatic sources, Turkey has tried to downplay as much as possible the paragraph calling for deepening EU-NATO relations on relations with Cyprus, which is a member of the EU, but not a member of NATO.
The leaders will reaffirm their commitment to NATO’s open door policy, a path “remains open to all European democracies which share our values ââand fulfill the necessary responsibilities and obligations”.
NATO members are also expected to declare that they “have no intention of deploying land missiles in Europe”.
If the passage remains in the document, the move is seen as a possible way to ease tensions with Russia ahead of a dialogue on “strategic stability” at Wednesday’s US-Russia summit in Geneva, where arms control will be held. a subject.
However, the draft text also underlines that “as long as nuclear weapons exist, NATO will remain a nuclear alliance”.
“Withdrawing does not mean ending our relations with Afghanistan” and “opening a new chapter” which will always involve providing financial support and training, NATO leaders will say and after the failure of the Biden administration to consult sufficiently with allies before the announcement.
NATO leaders should set NATO’s ambition to adapt to the impact of climate change on security, agree to reduce greenhouse gases from military activities and installations in line with national commitments under the Paris Agreement.
However, NATO diplomats remain skeptical. “We cannot imagine that F-35s fly on hydrogen,” a NATO diplomat told EURACTIV, adding that the ambition could be more linked to the modernization of the armies of certain major allies, who have still very polluting equipment from the Soviet era. Those members, like Poland or Turkey, are likely to ask for additional funds to go “slightly green” because they claim they can’t afford it, diplomatic sources said. (Alexandra Brzozowski | EURACTIV.com)