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Stoltenberg Sidesteps Questions On Biden’s Health At NATO Summit Preview

James King, MPA
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NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg avoided commenting on President Joe Biden’s health when asked during a Sunday interview on CBS News’ “Face The Nation.” The question arose following Biden’s recent debate performance, which has led to increased scrutiny of his health among NATO leaders.

Robert Costa, a CBS News reporter, asked Stoltenberg for his candid assessment of how NATO leaders view Biden’s health. Stoltenberg diverted attention to the upcoming NATO summit, celebrating the alliance’s 75th anniversary and emphasizing recent constructive meetings with Biden.

“I’m absolutely confident that, when all NATO leaders convene here this week, it will be a great summit,” Stoltenberg said. He discussed preparations for key decisions on defense, support for Ukraine, and burden-sharing, praising European allies for their increased defense spending.


Stoltenberg underscored the importance of strong U.S. leadership for NATO’s effectiveness. When pressed again about the private opinions of NATO leaders on Biden’s health, Stoltenberg firmly declined to comment.

“If I started to comment on issues like that, then, suddenly, NATO, I will be part of domestic debate,” he explained. Stoltenberg highlighted the necessity of keeping NATO focused on international cooperation and defense rather than engaging in U.S. domestic politics.

Stoltenberg highlighted the progress in defense spending among NATO members, noting that 23 allies now meet the 2% GDP target, reflecting an 18% increase in spending across Europe and Canada this year.

Amid growing concerns about Biden’s health, Stoltenberg’s reluctance to address the issue publicly illustrates an effort to keep NATO’s priorities aligned with its strategic goals rather than getting involved in member states’ internal political matters.