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Saturday, June 27, 2015

NATO to triple size of reaction force

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NATO announced late Wednesday it will triple the capacity of its Response Force to 40,000 troops.

"We have just taken another step forward in adapting NATO to our changed and more challenging security environment," Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said in Brussels, Belgium.

In light of Russia's involvement in eastern Ukraine and Moscow's recent decision to upgrade its military, including its nuclear arsenal, NATO is "carefully assessing the implications of what Russia is doing, including its nuclear activities," Stoltenberg said.

Stoltenberg also said the alliance is "working on how to deal with hybrid threats, including through close cooperation with the European Union," the organization said.

The Response Force currently has 13,000 troops and a new Very High Readiness Joint Task Force -- also known as the Spearhead Force -- will have 5,000 troops.

NATO isn't engaging in Cold War-style tactics, Stoltenberg said.

"We do not seek confrontation, and we do not want a new arms race," he added.

The multinational alliance has been conducting several military exercises recently. One took place last week in Sweden, and Russia's foreign ministry on Monday accused NATO countries of "sliding into a new military confrontation with destructive consequences."

Credit to edition.cnn.com

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