Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump, questioned Article 5. He had been critical of some allies – especially Germany – for under-spending on defense. Biden has now admitted that a growing number of NATO countries have meanwhile met the alliance’s goal of spending 2% of their GDP on defence. “Others are on the way,” Biden added. Germany has increased its defense spending in recent years, but it is still well below the 2% target. According to NATO estimates, 10 of the 30 NATO countries will have reached or exceeded this mark next year.
“NATO is of vital importance to the interests of the United States,” Biden said. Regarding the behavior of China and Russia, he stressed that the alliance faces new challenges. Biden thanked Stoltenberg for his work. “I know that we can count on America and that America can count on Europe,” Stoltenberg said. Biden participates in the NATO summit for the first time. The one-day meeting in Brussels was supposed to start this afternoon.
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