18, June 2016
Germany’s foreign minister has censured war games by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Eastern Europe, saying such drills will not bring security to the region and will rather stoke tensions with Russia. Frank-Walter Steinmeier made the remarks in an interview with the German Bild am Sonntag newspaper, whose extracts were published on Saturday.
“What we shouldn’t do now is inflame the situation further through saber-rattling and warmongering,” Steinmeier said, adding, “We are well-advised to not create pretexts to renew an old confrontation.” NATO launched the Anakonda-16 maneuver on June 7, simulating a Russian attack on Poland. The two-week-long exercise involves some 31,000 troops, dozens of ships and fighter jets, along with 3,000 vehicles.
“Whoever believes that a symbolic tank parade on the alliance’s eastern border will bring security, is mistaken,” Steinmeier said.