SHANGHAI, July 4. /TASS/. Bolstering NATO’s military potential may increase the internal tension in the alliance and disrupt the structure of European security, Executive Director of the Shanghai Society for Russia and Central Asia Li Lifan told TASS on Monday.
"Increasing the military potential is part of NATO’s efforts within its eastward expansion and this is done mostly to inspire and mislead some Eastern European countries. This requires finances and measures on setting up the organizational structure which is impossible to do immediately. On the contrary, this may increase the internal tension and disrupt the structure of European security which does not correlate with the interests of global peace," the expert said commenting on the decision made at the alliance’s Madrid summit to increase its presence on the eastern flank as well as boost the NATO Response Force from 40,000 to more than 300,000 people.
Following the June 28-39 Madrid summit, the US-led military bloc approved a new strategic concept which is the alliance’s roadmap for the next 10 years. It names Russia as NATO’s "most significant and direct threat." The document mentioned China for the first time in NATO’s history. Even though it is not viewed as a direct military adversary, it is described as a systemic challenge.