NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gives a press conference during a NATO summit at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) headquarters in Brussels on June 14, 2021 Photograph:( AFP )
The tone was set against China and Russia earlier as US President Joe Biden lashed out at both the countries. He spoke of 'new challenges' from Russia and China
Leaders of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) trained their guns at Russia and China on Monday using strong words. In case of Russia, the leaders said that there could not be return to normal relations between Moscow and NATO until Russia complies with international law.
"Until Russia demonstrates compliance with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities, there can be no return to 'business as usual'," the summit's final statement said.
About China, NATO said that its increasingly aggressive behaviour, including cyber warfare and building nuclear warheads, poses "systemic challenges" to international law and security.
"China's stated ambitions and assertive behaviour present systemic challenges to the rules-based international order and to areas relevant to Alliance security," a summit statement said.
The tone was set against China and Russia earlier as US President Joe Biden lashed out at both the countries. He spoke of 'new challenges' from Russia and China.
"I think that there is a growing recognition over the last couple of years that we have new challenges," Biden told NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg at bilateral talks ahead of the main summit.
"We have Russia that is not acting in a way that is consistent with what we had hoped, as well as China," he said.
"I want to make it clear: NATO is critically important for US interests in and of itself. If there weren't one, we'd have to invent it," he said.
And he stressed once again that Article 5 of the NATO treaty -- the obligation of members to defend one another, once called into question by Trump -- was a "sacred obligation".
(With inouts from agencies)