In a show of unity ahead of meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, US President Joe Biden on Monday (local time) said that the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) treaty is rock solid and unshakable.
He then called Putin a bright, tough and worthy adversary. "The NATO treaty is rock solid and unshakable. It's a sacred commitment," Biden told reporters after meeting with allies at the headquarters of the 30-member military alliance that has long been focused on the threat posed by Russia.
"Putin is bright, he is tough and I have found that he is... a worthy adversary," he said while hailing Putin.
In a White House statement, the US President said:"There is a growing recognition over the last couple of years that we have new challenges. And we have Russia that is not acting in a way that is consistent with what we had hoped, and -- as well as China."
"And I must say that we had as (inaudible) a number of my colleagues and our colleagues who are in the G7 have stepped up as well, in terms of the need for there to be greater coordination," he added.
Biden will meet his Russian counterpart in Geneva, Switzerland on June 16. However, NATO allies announced that they will gather in Spain next year.
Biden also met on the sidelines of the summit with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at a time of strained relations between the two countries.
The US President has arrived in-person at the NATO summit, where he urged western allies to better align themselves against China and Russia, the chief foreign policy concerns of his administration.
"I think that there is a growing recognition over the last couple years that we have new challenges, and we have Russia that is not acting in a way that is consistent with what we had hoped, as well as China," Biden said at the start of the summit, reported CNN.
The summit comes as Biden looks to reassert US leadership on the world stage and strengthen global partnerships. He arrived in Brussels on the heels of several meetings with US allies and the annual Group of Seven summit in Cornwall, UK.