Strengthening European Deployments

NATO members agreed to deploy additional military forces to ensure European members’ security in light of Russian military escalation and unrest in Ukraine, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said. “Today, we agreed on a package of further military measures to reinforce our collective defense and demonstrate the strength of Allied solidarity,” Rasmussen announced after a meeting of allied leaders on April 16. “You will see deployments at sea, in the air, on land to take place immediately. That means within days,” he stressed, adding that “more will follow, if needed, in the weeks and months to come.” Rasmussen said allied fighters deployed to Lithuania as part of NATO’s Baltic Air Policing mission will “fly more sorties,” more ships will be dispatched to the Baltic and Eastern Mediterranean, and NATO will up the number of exercises in the region. Meanwhile, State Department officials said the US is studying “options for potential additional security assistance” to Ukraine, in addition to long-standing capacity building efforts, according to an April 14 statement.