The Kremlin has criticized a statement by U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump about the willingness of the U.S. to defend the Baltic states in the event of a Russian attack, the TASS news agency reported Thursday.
Asked whether he would defend the Baltic states from their Russian neighbor, the U.S. Republican presidential hopeful told The New York Times that he would aid them only if those states “have fulfilled their obligations to us." NATO's collective defense policy stipulates that an attack on one ally is considered an attack on all allies.
Peskov said that it’s “not the best formulation” to “unnecessarily talk about a hypothetical Russian attack on someone.” He also noted that Russia has “obligations to European global strategic security” that the country is “doing an excellent job handling.”
While The New York Times initially posed the question, in releasing Peskov's statement the TASS news agency seem to have attributed the words to Trump himself. An earlier article by TASS, however, said that Trump was answering a question posed by reporters.
Trump was confirmed as the official Republican candidate for U.S. president on Tuesday during the party’s national convention in Ohio.