Austin said the massive withdrawal of US forces from Germany announced by former President Donald Trump is off the right track. The United States had previously suspended that plan to withdraw 12,000 troops, much to the delight of Berlin. Trump felt that Germany was spending too little money on the armed forces.
Since World War II, American forces have been stationed in Germany, but since the fall of the Berlin Wall, the numbers have been reduced. In 1990 there were still 200,000 people, of whom now about 34,500 left.
Minister Austin affirmed that Germany “will remain an important economic and security partner” of the United States for years to come. He described strengthening the relationship as a “top priority” for President Joe Biden’s administration.
Under the Trump administration, the Nord Stream gas pipeline from Russia to Germany has been a divisive fungus, as the United States slapped sanctions on companies involved in construction. “We have expressed our opposition to this deal and the effect it will give to Russia,” Austin said. He said the United States would not allow this conflict to damage its “great relationship” with Berlin. The Biden government earlier indicated that it would endorse and continue to comply with the relevant penal code beginning in 2019.
NATO CEO demands withdrawal
Russia should withdraw the forces that it sent to Ukraine and on the border with the east of that neighboring country. This was stated by NATO Chief Executive Jens Stoltenberg on Tuesday, ahead of the meeting to be held by NATO’s defense and foreign ministers on Wednesday.
And the Secretary-General demands Moscow to stop its “provocations” and to stop the escalation immediately. The G7 countries had already issued a similar call on Monday.
The NATO chief made the remarks at a press conference at Headquarters in Brussels with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitro Koliba. He said that his country is looking for a diplomatic solution. He also called for more sanctions against Russia and requested military assistance to stop the Russian “aggression”.
Stoltenberg spoke of the largest military build-up since Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula in 2014. According to Ukraine, 80,000 soldiers gathered in the Crimea and on the border with eastern Ukraine where the pro-Russian separatists declared their republics.
Ukraine would like to join the Western military alliance. Stoltenberg said NATO is the one to decide that. He indicated that Russia is trying to recreate a sphere of influence in order to control what its neighbors do.
On the other hand, there are two US Navy ships on their way to the Black Sea, which was described by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov as a provocation. He says the risk of accidents is high. The minister also condemned the delivery of American weapons to Kiev. Ryabkov said Moscow was continuing to do everything it could to protect residents of the Donbas region in eastern Ukraine.
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