NATO ministers order end to cooperation with Moscow, plans for reinforcing eastern security

The Associated Press

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen gestures while speaking during a media conference ahead of a meeting of the North Atlantic Council at NATO headquarters in Brussels on Tuesday, April 1, 2014. NATO foreign ministers begin a two-day meeting on Tuesday in which they will discuss, among other issues, the situation in Ukraine. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)

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By JOHN-THOR DAHLBURG and VLADIMIR ISACHENKOV, Associated Press

BRUSSELS (AP) — NATO's foreign ministers have ordered an end to civilian and military cooperation with Russia and told their generals and admirals to quickly devise ways to better protect alliance members that feel threatened by Vladimir Putin's Kremlin.

The 28-member alliance, the keystone of U.S. and European security, was reacting to its most serious crisis in years: Russia's unilateral annexation of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula.

Secretary of State John Kerry and the other ministers, meeting at NATO headquarters behind closed doors, unanimously agreed Tuesday on a number of measures, including possible redeployment of military assets in eastern NATO nations like Poland and the Baltic states.

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