December 24 – According to several media reports, NATO Secretary-General Stoltenberg said in response to Russia’s security proposal that NATO will never expand eastwards and other security proposals that NATO has never promised anyone that it will not expand its scale.
Russia put forward a series of “security guarantees” proposals to NATO and the United States in early December, which require NATO to agree to curb its expansion as a security guarantee to Russia. Stoltenberg responded on the 23rd that each country has the right to “determin its own destiny”.
Stoltenberg told the German dpa news agency that NATO “has never promised not to expand”. He added that the founding treaty of the EU stipulates that any European country can accede to it.
It is reported that NATO’s eastward expansion has always been Moscow’s most concerned issue and the most difficult issue in EU-Russia relations. Russian officials, including President Putin, believe that NATO informally promised Russia as early as the 1990s that it would not expand further eastward.
In addition, at the annual press conference on the 23rd, Russian President Putin also talked about NATO’s eastward expansion. He said that the West should immediately provide security guarantees to Russia, not to ask Russia to do so. “Our actions will not depend on the negotiation process, but on unconditional security guarantees to Russia. We have made it clear that NATO’s eastward expansion is unacceptable.
Putin further pointed out, “The United States has stood on our doorstep with missiles. Is it too much for us not to deploy offensive weapons systems on our doorstep?
Russia’s recent tensions with the United States and NATO on Ukraine have continued to be tense. Russia and Ukraine have deployed a large number of military personnel and equipment in the border areas between the two countries. Ukraine, the United States and NATO claim that Russia has the momentum of “invasion” against Ukraine. Russia denied it, stressing that NATO activities threaten the security of Russia’s borders, and Russia has the right to mobilize troops within its territory to defend its territory.