NATO vows tough line on Russia

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MONS, Belgium: NATO’s new supreme commander US General Curtis Scaparrotti said on Wednesday that he would “strengthen” the alliance’s stance in eastern Europe against a resurgent Russia. At a handover ceremony from his predecessor Philip Breedlove, the former commander of US forces in Korea also said NATO should consider whether to provide Ukraine with weaponry as it battles pro-Russian rebels. Scaparrotti’s comments came as Russia’s defense minister announced that Moscow will set up three new divisions in the west and south by the end of the year to counter NATO forces close to its border. The US general said Breedlove’s moves to boost NATO’s presence on its eastern flank following Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 and increasingly assertive stance in the region were “correct.”

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