July 31, 2021

NATO looks East, but implications for the Koreas remain uncertain

Alliance seeks greater cooperation in Asia, but experts see limited role for NATO in North Korea denuclearization talks

In a joint statement issued last week, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) signaled the expansion of its focus to Asia as it seeks to respond to the rise of China as an economic and military power.

Observers have keyed in on the communique’s direct comments on China: It describes Beijing as posing “systemic challenges” to the global order, as opposed to being a “threat” like Russia, while leaving the door open for cooperation on issues like climate change.