German Federal Intelligence Agency (BND) chief Bruno Kahl warned Western countries on Tuesday that they should be ready to deter the alleged “Russian threat”.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The BND chief Bruno Kahl on Tuesday called on Western countries to make sure they are ready to counter any “potential threat’ posed by Russia while at the same time maintaining “close ties” with Moscow.
“To put it bluntly, instead of having a partner for European security, we are more likely to face a potential threat in Russia,” Kahl said in an interview to the Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper.
The BND chief stressed that NATO member states and the West should prepare themselves for “counterbalancing and deterring these potential threats.” He added, however, that the Western states should also support close relations and communication channels with Russia in case Moscow reaches out to say it is interested in cooperation.
NATO has been gradually boosting its military buildup in Eastern Europe, citing Russia’s alleged meddling in the Ukrainian crisis in 2014. Following the July 2016 summit, the alliance announced that it would deploy four multinational battalions to Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Poland. In May, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that while Russia was not a threat to anyone, Moscow could not ignore any actions that could present a threat to its own national interests.