Russian officers have held an pressing assembly with the German Embassy’s navy attaché in Moscow, expressing concern at a sequence of feedback by the nation’s protection minister that they are saying could worsen already fraught relations.
In a press release launched on Monday, the Ministry of Defense revealed that, earlier that day, Berlin’s envoy “was asked to appear before the Main Directorate for Military Co-Operation.”
During the assembly, “attention was drawn to the remarks made by German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer on nuclear deterrence against Russia, and a diplomatic note was handed over.”
Last week, Kramp-Karrenbauer informed radio station Deutschlandfunk that nuclear weapons may very well be deployed over the Baltic nations that border Russia. According to her, “we must make it very clear to Russia that we are ready to use such measures as well, so that it would have an early deterrent effect.” This, she mentioned, “is in response to the current behavior of Russia.”
According to officers in Moscow, “such statements provoke increased tension in Europe and are not conducive to the normalization of the situation.” Responding to the claims, Kramp-Karrenbauer’s Russian counterpart, Sergey Shoigu, mentioned that “security in Europe can only be collective, without infringement on Russia’s interest.” However, he went on, “currently NATO is the party that’s not ready for equal dialogue on this issue.”
“Amid calls to deter Russia militarily, NATO is consistently building up its forces near our borders. The German foreign minister must know quite well how such actions have ended for Germany and Europe previously,” Shoigu added, in a comment extensively interpreted as a reference to WWII.
Kramp-Karrenbauer’s feedback have additionally drawn criticism from members of Germany’s coalition authorities, with Rolf Mützenich, the parliamentary chair of the Social Democratic Party, blasting them as unhelpful. “The defense minister’s recent conclusions about the use of nuclear weapons in the event of a conflict with Russia are irresponsible,” he mentioned.
“Mrs. Kramp-Karrenbauer[’s comments are] no different from the equally unfounded threats from the Russian side,” Mützenich continued, including that such statements contributed to the “spiral of escalation.”
The row comes simply days after NATO revealed its members had given a inexperienced mild to a serious plan designed to fight Russia in a putative navy battle. The labeled doc, detailing how the US-led bloc might conflict with Moscow’s forces from the Baltic to the Black Sea, is claimed to incorporate a deal with non-conventional warfare, together with cyberattacks, battle in area and even using nuclear warheads.
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