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Diplomat points out increasing NATO's budget unlikely to ensure European security

On the contrary, it creates additional risks, the Russian diplomat believes

SVETLOGORSK /Kaliningrad region/, August 15. /TASS/. Plans to boost NATO member states’ military spendings to two percent of their GDP and calls for raising the limit to four percent will not help ensure security in Europe but will create additional risks, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a briefing on Wednesday.

According to her, "all this definitely does not contribute to ensuring security in Europe, but on the contrary, it creates additional risks."

"A declaration adopted at the North Atlantic Alliance’s June summit reiterates the goal to increase NATO members’ military spendings to two percent of their GDP," Zakharova pointed out. "At the same time, their overall military expenditures constitute more than a half of the global spendings and exceed Russia’s 14-fold," she noted.

"As far as we know, there have been calls for raising the limit to four percent," Zakharova said, adding that given the increasing trade and economic competition and trade wars, "not everyone is happy about this prospect and the need for additional expenses."

Zakharova also noted that "for some countries, the requested increase in defense spending exceeds the expected GDP growth rate so it will create an imbalance between weapons and civilian life." "Particularly since Russia poses no threat to NATO members and Europe is not facing any threats that would require a military response. We live in a peaceful time, after all," Zakharova said.

"At the same time, we cannot but point out that there are some countries that seek to at least verbally advocate their actual national interests, but there also are others, who - like some fictional characters - tend to romanticize some outdated issues of the past and fight non-existent threats," the Russian diplomat said. "This is just how they see it and they take what they see for reality, though we do not know what actual goals they have - whether they want to attract the attention of others, get political gains or just earn money," Zakharova noted.