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Canada will lobby several NATO countries in Washington

Canada will lobby several NATO countries in Washington

Over the past decade, Canada has shown a lack of interest in NATO's defence and security policy. Politico Who spoke to several prominent figures ahead of the summit in Washington.

Canada has failed to meet several jointly set targets, including investing 2% of GDP in military spending and defence equipment, and the country does not appear to have any plans to meet the targets.

It's a position. This has led many NATO countries within the defence alliance, including the superpower the United States, to express their dissatisfaction. The United States in particular plays an important role for Canada, whose economy depends on the neighbouring country.

“Canada has major defence partnerships and is heavily dependent on the US defence industrial base because it lacks one. They always have to look at and relate to US defence policy,” says Björn Ottosson, senior US researcher and security policy expert at Total Defence’s Freedom of Information Research Institute.

During the summit that begins On Tuesday, Sweden’s first as a full NATO member, several countries will press Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to do more. At the same time, they want to send a stark warning that the situation could get worse for Canada if Donald Trump returns to the White House.

Trump said last winter that the United States would not defend NATO countries that did not increase their military budgets to the alliance’s 2 percent target. The former president’s message was clear:

– He said Russia can do whatever the hell it wants.

Representatives from several Member states point out that the deteriorating security situation following Russia's invasion of Ukraine meant members chose to spend more on their defences, while Canada chose to wait.

facts:NATO target 2%

Since 2006, NATO countries have had a common goal of spending at least 2% of GDP on defence.

By 2023, only eleven NATO countries have met this goal: the United States, Great Britain, Greece, Poland, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.

Poland spent the largest share of its state budget on defense: 3.9% of GDP, compared with 3.5% in the United States.

According to NATO's definition, Sweden already reported defence spending equivalent to 2.2% of GDP in 2024.

source: NATO And Government office.

Björn Ottosson talks about Canada's “security surplus” and believes its only neighbor is the United States.

– They do not have any security problems, and therefore they have not had to invest in their defense or security policy like many other countries.

– On the other hand, Canada has a tradition of protecting the international order and has been one of the countries most involved in peacekeeping operations. Historically, they have had a significant participation in NATO and the United Nations.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg opened the NATO summit by watching a baseball game on Monday.

This year, the defense alliance is important. With 23 of NATO's 32 countries having reached the 2% target, work has been intensified out of fear of Vladimir Putin's future plans.

Among the demands expected to be made in Washington is for Canada to set a timetable for the 2 percent target. Belgium, another country that also missed the target, has said it aims to reach the goal by 2035.

according to Leaked report Is Canadian military equipment “unusable” or “not even available,” prompting 23 U.S. senators last year to ask: write another message Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. In this regard, deep disappointment and concern were expressed regarding the country’s recent projections that it will not reach the 2 percent target in the near future.

Trudeau who was in power Since 2015, he has been increasingly questioned. In 2021, he called new elections, which his Liberal Party won, but fell short of its majority in parliament. The 52-year-old will be under pressure from NATO leaders in Washington.

– The pressure from the US is real, real and can have consequences. In fact, Trump ordered his troops to leave Germany when he disagreed with Angela Merkel, says Björn Ottosson, continuing:

– At the time it seemed like a punitive measure, but it happened at the end of his term, so it eventually ended up in the sand.

Read more:

US presidential election keeps NATO summit in check

Few NATO nations hit budget targets — a stinging rebuke of Trump's actions

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