President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron co-authored an op-ed published in The Times on Thursday (behind a paywall) outlining the worldwide threat posed by extremists, like those responsible for the deaths of two American journalists, and the importance of strengthening relationships among NATO countries.
Meanwhile, the country heads said they won’t roll over in the face of threats from the Islamic State militant group.
“Countries like Britain and America will not be cowed by barbaric killers,” they write. “We will be more forthright in the defence of our values, not least because a world of greater freedom is a fundamental part of how we keep our people safe.”
The article comes ahead of a NATO summit in Wales, starting on Thursday and lasting to Friday, that will focus on how to respond to Russia’s aggressive behaviour in Ukraine.
“With Russia trying to force a sovereign state to abandon its right to democracy at the barrel of a gun, we should support Ukraine’s right to determine its own democratic future and continue our efforts to enhance Ukrainian capabilities,” the op-ed said.
At the meeting, NATO leaders will also be asked to greenlight a rapid-response force that would be capable of deploying in Eastern Eastern at any time.
Potentially, the new force could be “composed of several thousand troops contributed on a rotating basis by the 28 NATO countries,” the Associated Press said.
The pair urged other security alliance members to “step up” their defence spending in order to help Britain and America combat terrorists who “thrive on political instability.”
The alliance must also take advantage of support from native forces. “We should use our expertise to provide training and mentoring to forces elsewhere, whether in Georgia or the Middle East, strengthening the capacity of forces there to tackle local threats.”
Cameron said on Thursday that Britain is thinking about “providing arms and training to Kurdish forces to help its fight against Islamic insurgents,” Reuters said.
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