Sun. Jul 14th, 2024
nato secretary general jens stoltenberg
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. Source: NATO

Brussels, 5 July 2024


On Friday (5 July 2024), Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg previewed next week’s Washington Summit, stressing that support to Ukraine will be NATO’s “most urgent task”.

“I expect heads of state and government will agree a substantial package for Ukraine,” said Mr Stoltenberg​. “NATO will take over the coordination and provision of most international security assistance,” with a command led by a three-star general and several hundred personnel working ​at at NATO headquarters in Germany and at logistical nodes in the eastern part of the Alliance, he said. He added that Allies will agree a financial pledge for Ukraine, and that he also expects more immediate military support to Ukraine; more bilateral security agreements; and work on deepened military interoperability. The Secretary General said that all of these elements “constitute a bridge to NATO membership and a very strong package for Ukraine at the Summit,” adding: “Ukraine is moving closer to NATO”.

“Deterrence and defence will be another important topic for our Summit,” Mr Stoltenberg said, saying that NATO has been fundamentally transformed over the past decade, including with  500,000 troops on high readiness, improved capabilities, combat-ready battlegroups and the accession of new members. At the Summit, Allies are due to endorse a pledge to strengthen transatlantic defence industrial cooperation, to boost production. He added that NATO will further enhance ballistic missile defences with a new Aegis Ashore base in Poland. He welcomed that 23 Allies are now spending at least 2% of their GDP on defence.

Global partnerships will be the third topic for the Summit. The Secretary General has invited the leaders of Australia, Japan, New Zealand and the Republic of Korea to the Summit to further deepen cooperation, including on support to Ukraine, cyber and new technologies. “The closer that authoritarian actors align, the more important it is that we work closely with our friends in the Indo-Pacific,” he said. SUMMIT ESSENTIALS
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