Sir, In advocating a European security pact as a supplement to Nato, Anne Applebaum (“Europe needs a new defence pact — and Britain can lead it”, February 16) has adopted an idea that Moscow has been promoting since the 1950s. Of course, such a pact would have to include Russia if it is to contribute to peace and security in Europe. Russia’s exclusion from the pact would deepen the conflicts and divisions between itself and the west. That would not further the cause of peace in Ukraine, nor would it help stabilise relations between Russia and its western neighbours or facilitate the resolution of issues connected to cyber warfare and interference in the internal affairs of states.

In all likelihood the Trump era means that Europe does need a new security architecture but it should be pan-European and inclusive of all states prepared to pledge peace, non-aggression and the resolution of disputes on a collaborative basis.

Geoffrey Roberts

Dean of Graduate Studies and Professor of History,

University College Cork,

National University of Ireland

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