Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer (AKK), Germany's defence minister, stated that Moscow should be informed that NATO is prepared to use its nuclear deterrent in the event of a Russian attack on a member of the Alliance, causing significant reactions in Germany. The Russian defence ministry handed a protest note to a German military attaché on Monday in response to the German defence minister's comments about the need to deter Russia's nuclear capabilities, according to the RIA official news agency.
“We have to make it very clear to Russia that in the end – and that is also the deterrent doctrine – we are prepared to use such means so that it has a deterrent effect beforehand and no one gets the idea, for example, the areas over the Baltic States or in the Black Sea to attack NATO partners,” she told Dlf in an interview.
“That is the core idea of NATO, this Alliance, and it will be adapted to the current behaviour of Russia. In particular, we see violations of the airspace over the Baltic states, but also increasing attacks around the Black Sea,” she added.
The remarks come after Russia said last week that it will terminate current institutionalised talks with NATO. Simultaneously, the Alliance decided on a new master plan to protect against a future Russian hybrid attack.
According to RIA, the Russian defence ministry called the German diplomat and "drew attention to the comments by German Defence Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer on the nuclear deterrence of Russia, and a note was handed over."
Russia closed two NATO offices in Moscow and stopped activities at NATO headquarters making the relations at the lowest point since the end of the Cold War.