"Nato is not looking for conflict with Russia, but if it comes to that, the alliance is ready to defend every inch of its territory," the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, said ahead of a meeting of foreign ministers of Nato countries in Brussels on Friday.
“Ours is a defensive alliance. We seek no conflict. But if conflict comes to us we are ready for it and we will defend every inch of Nato territory,” Blinken told reporters in Brussels.
An extraordinary meeting of EU foreign ministers will also be held on Friday afternoon, and will be joined by Blinken, the British and Canadian foreign ministers, Liz Truss and Melanie Joly respectively, as well as Ukraine’s Foreign Minister, Dmytro Kuleba, and Nato Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg.
The European Union has 27 member countries, including 21 who are also members of Nato. The remaining six are Austria, Cyprus, Finland, Ireland, Malta, and Sweden. On the other hand, Nato has 30 member countries, including four countries which are hoping to join the EU (Albania, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and Turkey) and two more that have decided to formally stay outside the bloc (Iceland and Norway).
Meanwhile, Secretary General of Nato, Jens Stoltenberg, commented on the recent Russian attacks around a large nuclear power plant in Ukraine, saying that such moves simply serve to demonstrate “the recklessness of this war and the importance of ending it, as well as the importance of Russia withdrawing all its troops.”
Croatia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Gordan Grlic-Radman, also gave a statement condemning Russia’s invasion in Ukraine.
“We are witnessing a tragic loss of human lives, suffering and destruction. We express our respect for the courage and sacrifice of Ukrainian soldiers and civilians who are offering resistance. The Croatian people and political leadership are united in their support for Ukraine,” Grlic- Radman said, calling on Russia to stop the invasion and withdraw from Ukraine, and turn to dialogue instead.