36,000 NATO personnel gathered in Southern Europe to practice their biggest military exercise in over a decade.
NATO – the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation – is carrying out the biggest military drill in over a decade. 36,000 soldiers, sailors and air crew from over 30 countries (including non NATO members) joined together in Southern Europe.
NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg told Euronews about the security challenges that emerged since this operation known as Exercise Trident Juncture 2015 was set up 2 years ago.
‘From the East we see a more assertive Russia. But NATO does not seek a confrontation with Russia. Actually we will continue to strife for a more constructive and cooperative relationship with Russia. But to the South we see something very different. We see violence, we see brutal violence conducted by ISIL and all the terrorist organisations. And we see also failing and failed states’, said Jens Stoltenberg.
NATO is also testing Spanish forces that will lead the so called Very High Readiness Task Force (VJTF) or Spearhead. According to US Commanding General Ben Hodges, their training should help them face unconventional warfare techniques adapted by the so called “green men” in Crimea and Eastern Ukraine last year.
Speaking from Zaragoza, Euronews correspondent Andrei Beketov said with this operation, NATO means business, but their elite brigade, known as Spearhead, will only be ready by next year.