No need to expand deployment of nuclear weapons in Europe: NATO chief

Finland’s president says his country has no plans to deploy nuclear arms on its territory

Leila Nezirevic  | 06.06.2024 - Update : 06.06.2024
No need to expand deployment of nuclear weapons in Europe: NATO chief NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg


NATO chief on Thursday said there is no need to expand the deployment of nuclear weapons in Europe.

Speaking at an Atlantic Council of Finland meeting, Jens Stoltenberg said: “There is no demand, and there is no interest to expand the deployment of nuclear weapons in Europe.”

He also pointed out that NATO’s arrangements to do with US weapons being deployed in Europe as well as Europe providing the forces, the planes, and the logistics, are enough to act as a deterrent against Russia.

According to the NATO secretary-general, this approach is “tried and tested.”

Finland’s President Alexander Stubb, who was also present at the meeting, confirmed that Finland has no plans to deploy nuclear arms on its territory.

“It's important to keep in mind as the secretary-general said that we do not want any nuclear weapons. No one has offered to bring us any nuclear weapons,” Stubb confirmed.

But at the same time, NATO's deterrence is based on three pillars which include “forces, missiles, and a nuclear umbrella provided by the United States,” he added.

“My personal take is that the less we talk about nuclear, the better the deterrence,” he added.

Stubb further emphasized that Nordic countries benefit from the fact that the United States wants to store military equipment in Finland, Sweden, Norway, and Denmark.

The bilateral defense agreements between Nordic countries and the United States are complementing the NATO alliance and collective security guarantees, said Stoltenberg, adding that Article 5 which obliges the alliance to defend any member state involved in the conflict “is about an individual responsibility to protect each other.”

No plans to send NATO troops to Ukraine

Earlier on Thursday, Stoltenberg announced that the military alliance has no plans to send troops to Ukraine.

“NATO has no plans to deploy forces to Ukraine,” said Stoltenberg during his visit to Finland where he held a joint press conference with President Stubb in Helsinki.

Stoltenberg also pointed out that Russia is not an immediate threat to NATO countries.

“We don't see any imminent military threat against any NATO ally. And now, of course, Russia is preoccupied with the war in Ukraine,” he reassured while at the same time suggesting that “when the fighting ends in Ukraine, they can rebuild those forces.”

Stubb agreed with Stoltenberg and said that it is unlikely that Moscow will “deviate” from its current attack on Ukraine.

“The whole idea that a country like Russia will somehow attack the biggest military alliance in the world, I simply find rather implausible,” Stubb reassured.

The president also emphasized that the best way to “prevent” the war is “to prepare for it.”

Stubb ended the joint conference with saying that right now there is no military threat by Moscow against Finland, Sweden, Norway, or the Baltic states.

In May, Stoltenberg urged the United States and the NATO countries in the EU to allow Ukraine to use Western-supplied missiles for strikes inside Russia.

While European Union High Representative Josep Borrell thinks that Western leaders should avoid “risking escalation” by allowing Ukraine forces to use weapons on Russian territory.

Russian President Vladimir Putin in May threatened the West with "serious consequences" if Ukraine is allowed to use Western long-range weapons on Russian territory, according to national newspaper The Moscow Times.

The president warned that Kyiv striking inside Russia could trigger a global conflict.

In response to the West’s delivery of long-range weapons to Kyiv, Putin on Wednesday warned that Moscow could arm countries that are entertaining attacks on Western targets.

Several countries, including the United States, have given Ukraine permission to strike targets on Russian soil.

Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.