Rasmussen: Russia Will Increase Pressure on Moldova, Georgia

Politics » DEFENSE | May 16, 2014, Friday // 16:18
Bulgaria: Rasmussen: Russia Will Increase Pressure on Moldova, Georgia NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen. File photo.

Russia's military actions in Ukraine have changed the security situation in Europe dramatically, according to the Secretary General of NATO Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

In an interview with the Romanian Hotnews.ro on Thursday, Rasmussen said that he expected a NATO summit in September to discuss long term measures to enhance the collective defense of member countries.

NATO's Secretary General who is on official visit to Romania also spoke of how the Russian misinformation campaigns try to influence decision making in NATO member states and of an increased intelligence activity by Russia.

Rasmussen said that there was no visible evidence of a Russian withdrawal of military forces from the Ukrainian border. Asked whether he fears that Russia will try to destabilize the Republic of Moldova in the next weeks, prior to signing a crucial treaty with the European Union, Rasmussen said that he had no doubt that Russia will increase pressure on Moldova, as well as possibly Georgia in the run-up to the finalization of the association agreement.

"We have seen that in the past, we will see it in the future as well. Because that is the overall goal of Russia, to prevent these countries from seeking closer relations with the European Union and NATO," he argued.

Referring to an article published by Germany's Der Spiegel, according to which Berlin is concerned over the growing influence of Russia on the government in Bulgaria, Rasmussen said he had no reason to doubt Bulgaria's commitment to NATO's allies as well as to its EU obligations.

"But clearly Russia is very active also when it comes to Bulgaria," he added.

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Tags: Anders Fogh Rasmussen, NATO, Ukraine, Russia, Bulgaria, defense, Association Agreement, military forces

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