WARSAW — Russia’s new military doctrine calls for a more aggressive stance toward NATO, boosting presence in the Arctic and strengthening cooperation with India and China.
“Global developments at present stage are characterized by an increasing global competition, tensions in various interstate and interregional areas,” said the document, signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin on Dec. 26. “There are many regional conflicts which remain unresolved. There is a tendency to force their resolution, including those which are in the regions bordering the Russian Federation. The existing architecture of the international security system does not provide an equal level of security to all states. ”
The new doctrine brings significant changes to the country’s defense strategy in a number of fields, and names the expansion of NATO in Russia’s neighborhood as one of the principal threat factors.
In response to efforts by NATO to extend air and anti-missile defense coverage over Europe, the document enables the joint setting up of missile defense systems by Russia and allied countries, which was not possible under the previous doctrine. The document says these efforts by NATO states are “undermining global stability and violating the balance of power in the nuclear-missile sphere.”
Referring to the ongoing military conflict in Ukraine, where Moscow is backing pro-Russian rebels in the country’s east against the government in Kiev, the document explicitly identifies “the expansion of NATO’s military potential on the Russian border” as a security threat. As a response, the doctrine calls for developing cooperation with other BRICS countries, which stands for Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. The document points to this as one of the “main tasks of the Russian Federation to contain and prevent armed conflicts.”