As UN figures have revealed that over 2 million people have fled their homes in Syria, Nato’s political chief on Monday called for a strong ‘international response’ to the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian conflict.
Rassmussen said in Brussels that he also believes the Syrian government is behind the chemical weapons attack that took place earlier in August in the outskirts of Damascus, killing over 1000 people.
‘No decision has been made yet. Allies consult with each other. As I said, I think there is an agreement that we need a firm international response in order to avoid that chemical attacks take place in the future. It would send a very, I would say, dangerous signal to dictators all over the world if we stand idle by and don’t react,’ Nato’s Secretary General said.
In the context of the Syrian conflict, NATO’s political chief also called on Europe to step up cooperation on defense. Rassmussen said that European countries need more military integration and no borders in the EU defence market.
‘It is important for Europe and it is important for the transatlantic alliance because a strong Europe is also a strong Alliance”, Rasmussen said at the alliance’s monthly press briefing in Brussels.
Europe needs modern and effective defense industries, where competition drives innovation, where national borders are no barrier to international cooperation,’ Rasmussen stressed.
Later this week, The Nato chief is expected to join an informal meeting of European Defense ministers in Vilnus, where cooperation will take center stage in the discussion.