NATO is shortsighted and has a misguided focus on threats from Russia, the Kremlin says, hours before the military alliance is set to clear the way for the deployment of up to 4,000 troops in rotating battalions to the Baltic countries and Poland.
"It is absurd to speak about a threat from Russia when in the centre of Europe dozens of people are killed and in the Middle East hundreds of people every day," the Kremlin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov says in comments carried by the Interfax news agency. "This must be an absolutely shortsighted organization to distort its emphasis in such a way."
"If they need to ... stir up anti-Russian hysteria and Russophobia, then based on that emotion-evoking backdrop deploy air and ground forces close to Russia's borders, it is unlikely that we can find some reason for collaboration," Peskov says.
There could be a reason for collaboration "if the work indeed focuses on strengthening trust on the continent and on what is really threatening us all and killing people in Europe: terrorism."