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Citing Russian 'Aggression,' Obama Stands Behind Baltic Security

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

U.S. President Barack Obama has assured Estonia of U.S. support for regional security in the Baltics and the "unbreakable" U.S. commitment to defend any NATO ally against attack.

At a news conference in Tallinn on September 3 after talks with Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves, Obama spoke of Russian "aggression against Ukraine" and said “Estonia will never stand alone.”

Obama also said that Russia’s role in the conflict in eastern Ukraine “gives us an opportunity to understand the importance” of updating and bolstering NATO’s defense capabilities.

The Estonian president also said the conflict in eastern Ukraine is "Russian aggression” and underscores the need for a “robust and visible” NATO presence in his country.

Ilves said "Russia must admit that it is a party to the conflict and take genuine steps for a de-escalation” of the crisis.

After their bilateral talks, Obama and Ilves were to meet with Latvian President Andris Berzins and Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite.

To read the full story

With reporting by Reuters, AP, AFP, BBC, ITAR-TASS, and Interfax.

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

Citing Russian 'Aggression,' Obama Stands Behind Baltic Security

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