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Why Europe Still Needs Nuclear Deterrence

RIGA/VILNIUS/WARSAW – In recent months, we have joined discussions led by former United States Senator Sam Nunn, former British Minister of Defense Lord Desmond Browne, and others to find a way to reduce nuclear weapons in Europe. Although we fully endorse the aim of working towards a world free of nuclear arms, we firmly believe that NATO must remain a nuclear alliance so long as these weapons continue to exist around the world.

At NATO’s summit in Chicago this month, determining the appropriate mix of conventional, nuclear, and missile-defense capabilities to ensure a reliable level of nuclear deterrence will undoubtedly be an important item on the agenda. But, even before those discussions take place, it is abundantly clear that there are a number of powerful reasons for maintaining NATO’s current mix of capabilities, including the presence of US nuclear weapons in Europe.