President-elect Joe Biden, like current President Donald Trump, will continue to pressure European members of the alliance to increase their defence spending, NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said.
The still sitting Trump, according to Stoltenberg, had “his own style” and was “quite clear” to the other members about his expectations. Stoltenberg says he is almost sure that Biden will express “the same expectation of the European partners”.
In an interview with several German newspapers, Stoltenberg said he is confident that NATO in Biden has “a strong supporter of the alliance.” Quite different from Trump, who once called NATO “obsolete.”
Stoltenberg and Biden spoke on Monday for the first time since the Democrat came out as the winner of the elections earlier this month. The NATO chief has congratulated Biden on his victory and said he looks forward to working closely together further to strengthen the bond between North America and Europe.
Biden assured in the conversation that the United States remains committed to its duties as a NATO ally, including the obligation to provide mutual assistance in the event of an attack.
Biden wants to work with Stoltenberg and the other NATO members to ensure the alliance maintains the strategic direction and capabilities to continue to deter potential enemies and counter new threats.
Under Trump, relations between the United States and NATO were noticeably damaged. Trump repeatedly expressed doubts as to whether the US would comply with its obligation to provide military assistance in an emergency.
In addition, there were no agreed announcements for the withdrawal of troops from Germany and most recently from Afghanistan and Iraq.