Military Capabilities

Defence ministers to follow up NATO leaders’ July decisions

28 September 2018

NATO leaders may have approved an impressive number of decisions at their July summit in Brussels, but the follow-up work now falls to NATO defence ministers when they gather there on 3–4 October.

Two sensitive issues stand out: burden-sharing among the allies and how to deter Russia’s growing anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) capabilities along NATO’s southeastern and northeastern flanks.

“We will be conferring with [NATO partner country] Georgia on Black Sea security issues,” an allied diplomat said on 28 September. “The A2/AD issue is on all our minds.”

The Black Sea is by no means a ‘Russian lake’, but allied planners worry about Moscow’s ability to conduct electronic warfare in the region due to its growing naval strength at Sevastopol after its seizure of Crimea in March 2014.

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