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NATO Meet: Leaders Congregate in Brussels today

The US President Joe Biden arrived in Brussels on 23 March to attend the NATO meeting. Other leaders are also arriving in the city to decide Russian President Vladimir Putin’s actions in Ukraine. The leaders will also discuss China’s role in this ongoing situation. The members will also work on ways to improve NATO’s deterrence and defence. 

The Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has been invited to the meet and address the “extraordinary” session to be held on 24 March.  The President is likely to join the meeting virtually and brief the NATO members about the current situation in Ukraine. 

This extraordinary meeting was called on 15 March. 

While announcing the meet, the General Secretary of NATO, Jens Stoltenburg urged the European states to continue their action against Russia. He called on states to stand together against Russia’s action. 

Stoltenburg called on China “to join rest of the world” to condemn Russian actions against Ukraine. 

Briefing media persons yesterday, the NATO General Secretary said that he expects members to decide on four new agendas: NATO battlegroups in Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, and Slovakia. The leaders should also decide on strengthening NATO’s posture across all domains (land, sea, air, space, and cyberspace), providing additional support to Ukraine, and stepping up support for other partners at risk from Russian pressure.  

The US President who is in Brussels now would meet European leaders and G7 members. The main focus of his trip is likely to be the Ukraine crisis. He is also going to visit Poland on 25 and 26 March. Western leaders are gathered in the Belgium capital to attend back-to-back meetings of NATO, G-7, and European countries and further increase pressure on the Russian President. 

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is also in Brussels and is going to interact with some NATO leaders on the side lines of the meeting. He is likely to meet French President Emmanuel Macron, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas, and Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez. 

It may be noted that Erdogan has been talking to representatives of Ukraine and Russia to resolve the crisis. 

NATO allies are again meeting in June this year in Madrid where the members are expected to adopt a new strategic concept. 

The British Prime Minister is expected to announce a special package for Ukraine at the NATO summit.