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NATO chief warns of consequences if China continues to support Russia’s war in Ukraine

NATO chief warns of consequences if China continues to support Russia’s war in Ukraine

'It's not sustainable and viable that China continues to fuel the biggest security threat challenge for NATO allies,' Jens Stoltenberg tells reporters in Canada

By Merve Aydogan
 
 

HAMILTON, Canada (AA) - NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned China on Wednesday over its continued support to Russia amid its war in Ukraine.

"It's not sustainable and viable that China continues to fuel the biggest security threat challenge for NATO allies, especially in Europe, by propping up the Russian war economy," Stoltenberg told reporters in Ottawa, where he arrived to meet with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

While Stoltenberg and Trudeau are to meet and address final preparations for the NATO Summit in Washington next month, the alliance chief hailed Canada’s status as a NATO ally.

Asked about Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to North Korea, Stoltenberg noted the importance of unity among NATO allies at a time "when authoritarian powers like Russia, North Korea, Iran and China are aligning more and more."

"It's extremely important that we (NATO), in light of the alignment between Russia, China and North Korea, are also working more closely with our partners in the Asia Pacific, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand and Australia," he said, adding that Putin's visit revealed Russia's dependence on its "authoritarian friends" in its fight against Ukraine.

Stoltenberg continued by warning China over its behavior in support of Russia, stressing that "there will and must be some consequences."

Asked about Canada's plans to meet the alliance's target for its members of spending at least 2% of their gross domestic product (GDP) on defense, Stoltenberg urged allies to reach the target, adding he is looking forward to hearing Canada's plans in this regard.

Noting that there will be "wide range of issues" to discuss with the Canadian premier, Stoltenberg said "one of them is also defense spending."

He stressed the importance of NATO investing for its defense and to prevent war while countries like China and Russia are "investing heavily in new military capabilities, including long-range weapons and advanced missile systems."

"The best way to ensure that we preserve peace is to stand together as NATO and invest as we have agreed. We have agreed in NATO to invest at least 2%," he said.

Prior to the news conference, Stoltenberg was presented with the Louis St. Laurent Award of Excellence for his "outstanding service to peace and security" during an event hosted by the NATO Association of Canada and the Canadian NATO Parliamentary Association.

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