NATO 'reforming itself'"There is always uncertainty in the change in American administration. There's nothing new about that," said Fallon outside the main meeting hall. "Successive American presidents have urged European countries to do more." He said NATO is reforming itself, and since the military alliance's 2014 Wales summit the decline in defence spending has ended, alongside the preparation of response forces on Europe's eastern flank as Russian President Vladimir Putin has become increasingly aggressive. The British politician also expressed confidence in a moderation of Trump's campaign positions. "I'm sure the new administration will appreciate the importance of international organizations and alliances, including the NATO alliance, to keep the peace in Europe and also internationally."
'Quite large' financial contributionCanadian Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said he expects to meet with members of an American congressional delegation who are coming to the conference, and is looking forward to meetings with the new U.S. defence secretary when the administration is in place. Sajjan described Canada's financial contribution to NATO as "quite large," and didn't indicate his government is planning to spend more in the future. He continued to be cautious about commenting on Trump's friendliness towards Putin, and the president-elect's comment that residents of Crimea seemed to prefer living under Russia. Sajjan repeated that he's looking forward to "the right conversation" with the new U.S. secretary of defence.
Ongoing assistance for UkraineHe said Canada remains committed to supporting training and assistance to Ukraine. Delegates from 70 countries, including a dozen defence ministers and 30 senior military leaders, are attending the conference — which is billing itself as the first gathering of significant international leaders since the American election. Peter Van Praagh, president of the forum, said at the opening news conference he expects there will be "frank and difficult" conversations among delegates from many nations about the changed situation that the Trump election victory brings.
142 total views, 1 views today