OREANDA-NEWSRussia appealed to NATO to abandon military exercises during the celebration of the 75th anniversary of Victory in the Great Patriotic War. This was announced to reporters by Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko, commenting on the cancellation of the European exercises of the Defender 2020 alliance in connection with the coronavirus pandemic. “We appealed to European countries during this period to abandon active exercises”, he said.

Grushko emphasized that against the backdrop of the pandemic, all instruments of international cooperation, including military contacts, are extremely demanded. "The current situation just shows absolute stupidity, I can’t say otherwise, the NATO decisions and other decisions that were made in the United States on breaking all military contacts with the Russian Federation. Today we see that life puts everything in its place "he pointed out.

On March 19, Secretary General of the North Atlantic Alliance Jens Stoltenberg announced that NATO has revised its entire exercise program in connection with the coronavirus pandemic. He also confirmed the cessationof Defender 2020, which was supposed to be the largest strategic maneuver in Europe since the end of the Cold War, at the very initial stage of the US European exercises.