Tuesday, August 9, 2022

US Senate NATO observer group gives Biden five-point proposal for the alliance

A bipartisan group of US Senators forming the NATO Observer Group sent a list of proposals meant for the military alliance to US President Joe Biden ahead of his Brussels visit, as per a letter sent by the Senators to Biden. The list contains five proposals and is in regards to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. “As members of the Senate NATO Observer Group, we wish to convey robust bipartisan support ahead of your trip to Brussels next week for this extraordinary NATO Summit… We support your efforts to maintain transatlantic strength and unity at this critical moment for the alliance and have outlined a number of key issues we wish to convey ahead of your visit to Brussels,” the letter, first obtained by Politico on Friday, said. Biden is set to attend an “extraordinary” NATO summit in Brussels amid the Russia-Ukraine war.

The Senators in the letter first asked Biden to convey the US Congress’ support for NATO and express their appreciation to countries that recently decided to expedite or increase defence spending commitments.

For the second point, the Senators proposed that NATO and its members urgently explore all options to support Ukraine’s fight against Russian aggression and take President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s request for military equipment seriously to defend Ukrainian skies.

The senators also urged Biden to request NATO to strengthen its presence on its eastern flank, including the establishment of an Enhanced Forward Presence in Romania. The Senators also requested NATO increase its engagement in the Balkans region and consider contingency measures in the event that Russia vetoes the renewal of the EU Forces mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the letter said.

Lastly, the letter urged Biden to consider making an additional stop to a NATO member country sharing its border with Russia, either Romania or a Baltic state, to convey strong US support to the region amid the ongoing crisis in Ukraine.

The Senators who signed the letter include Senators Jeanne Shaheen, John Barrasso, Cory Booker and Marco Rubio among others.

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