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Immediate Release

Readout of Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III's Calls With NATO Ally Counterparts

Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby provided the following readout:

On Friday, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III spoke with several of his NATO Ally counterparts to share with them his perspectives on Russian military force posture around Ukraine. 

Secretary Austin spoke with Polish Minister of National Defence Blaszczak, German Federal Minister of Defense Lambrecht, Canadian Minister of National Defence Anand, French Minister of the Armed Forces Parly, Romanian Minister of National Defence Dincu, and Italian Minister of Defense Guerini.  

Secretary Austin laid out steps the United States is taking to reassure NATO Allies and underscored our ironclad commitment to Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty and collective defense.  

The United States already has robust capabilities in Europe, and we stand united with our NATO Allies to deter and defend against any aggression.  In that vein, Secretary Austin thanked his counterparts for support to Ukraine and for Alliance assurance and deterrence measures. 

He particularly thanked Poland, Germany, and Romania for hosting additional U.S. forces announced today and on February 2. 

The Secretary made clear that the United States continues to see signs of Russian escalation, including new forces arriving at the Ukrainian border.  He also reiterated that we are in the window when an invasion could begin at any time.  

Separately, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Kahl spoke with UK Minister for the Armed Forces Heappey and Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Cooper spoke with Ukrainian Deputy Minister of Defense Polishchuk.