NATO countries in the future can be expected to justify any use of nuclear weapons. This opinion was expressed by the deputy head of the Russian delegation Andrey Belousov. Speaking at a review conference of the countries participating in the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), the diplomat pointed to the final assignment of the status of a nuclear military-political bloc to the alliance, which, in his words, “is directly spelled out in the final declaration of the alliance’s Madrid summit.”
“The NPT community has yet to analyze the consequences of this circumstance, which forces us to take a different look at the status of non-nuclear members of the bloc, especially those on whose territory American nuclear weapons are deployed. In this regard, the question of how the presence of foreign nuclear weapons and their participation in the nuclear alliance is compatible with their obligations under the NPT,” Belousov said.
Moscow has long been asking a similar question in connection with NATO’s “joint nuclear missions” to test the use of nuclear weapons, in which non-nuclear members of the bloc are actively involved. According to Belousov, the Russian Federation has repeatedly heard statements that this practice does not contradict the NPT and that the conduct of such missions was allegedly agreed upon at the stage of preparing the treaty. The diplomat pointed out that the Russian side considers such arguments to be nothing more than excuses to justify actions that “go against the key provisions of the NPT, recognized as the cornerstone of international security.”
“If we summarize all these facts, then the conclusion suggests itself that in the future NATO member states can be expected to justify any use of nuclear weapons. By the way, there is every reason for such a conclusion,” he emphasized.
Belousov explained that US doctrinal documents stipulate the use of nuclear weapons under the pretext of threatening their own vital interests or those of their allies.
“Analysis of this thesis leads to the idea that the United States has reserved the ability to use nuclear weapons at any time, for any reason and against any state, simply by declaring that their vital interests are affected,” he added.
According to Belousov, such a situation actually creates a real threat of nuclear war. He also recalled that at the moment the United States remains the only country that has used nuclear weapons in practice.