Stoltenberg comments on Russia’s refusal to observe NATO exercise: “Unfortunate”

Jens StoltenbergPhoto: Annika Byrde / NTB

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg says it is unfortunate that Russia has never been transparent or invited other countries to any of its own military exercises.

Stoltenberg believes it is important to be predictable and transparent during military exercises such as Cold Response and that neutral observers should be involved. Russia was invited to observe Cold Response 2022 – but it declined the invitation.

“We (NATO) are always transparent and always invite other countries to observe,” NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said at the press conference in Bardufoss on Friday. 

“It is unfortunate that Russia would not come to this exercise, but it is even more unfortunate that they never invite us to observe their military exercises.”

Importance of Cold Response

Stoltenberg emphasized that Russia claimed that it would carry out a military exercise on the border with Ukraine before invading the country.

He added that the Cold Response exercise in the north this year is particularly important in light of the Ukraine war.

“The exercise has long been planned, but it has become even more important after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The exercise demonstrates the need for allies to stand together and not provoke, but defend,” he said.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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