The NATO Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg, stated that NATO can apply article 5 of the Washington Treaty, which will provide military response to all Alliance members, even in case of hybrid attacks on one of the country-members. Stoltenberg noted that the heads of NATO Ministry of Foreign Affairs agreed on a possible application of the Article in any particular case. The hybrid attack can be understood as an armed conflict with the use of terrorist threats and information warfare.
However, as the Head of NATO stated, it wasn’t a question of the one particular country against which the whole Alliance power could be aimed.
“Hybrid threats aren’t connected with one particular country or a region. NATO received hybrid threats from different regions of the world. These are threats, which combine propaganda, special operations, cyber attacks, misinformation and use of military force in order to achieve particular political objectives,” the Secretary-General said. He also noted that the NATO concept represents preparation, deterrence, and defence.
He said that hybrid calls represent a wide range of threats. Therefore, NATO needs to have a wide range of possibilities for protection. “Misinformation and deception are used for hybrid attacks and the time for response is very limited.That’s why we need to have [a] high degree of readiness,” Stoltenberg added.
As reported by RIA Novosti, NATO countries will not cut military budgets, but they will invest more in the security field. Jens Stoltenberg called Alliance members to increase their expenses for the defence.