Chairman of the NATO Military Committee commends Finland for active military cooperation with NATO

  • 25 Apr. 2016 - 26 Apr. 2016
  • |
  • Last updated: 26 Apr. 2016 17:09

During his two-day visit to Finland, the Chairman of the NATO Military Committee, General Petr Pavel met with the President of Finland, Mr Sauli Niinistö, Finnish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Timo Soini, Finnish Minister of Defence, Dr. Jussi Niinistö and Chief of Defence, General Jarmo Lindberg. Discussions focused on regional security and NATO-Finnish military cooperation and interoperability.

Finnish cooperation with NATO is based on the country's long-standing policy of military non-alignment and firm national political consensus. Cooperation has been reinforced over the years since Finland joined NATO’s Partnership for Peace programme in 1994, most recently in 2014 when Finland became one of NATO's Enhanced Opportunity Partners at the Summit in Wales.

General Pavel and the Finnish political and military leaders exchanged views on the security developments in the Baltic region, NATO and Finnish Defence Forces adaptation to the changed security environment and practical aspects of military cooperation between NATO and Finland. The discussions concluded with the General highlighting NATO's preparations in the run up to the Warsaw Summit in July. The Chairman was "impressed with the level of adaptation on the part of the Finnish Defence Forces" and commended General Lindberg for "Finland's active partnership with NATO, as evidenced through participation in NATO-led missions and operations, the NATO Response Force, training and exercises, trust funds, cyber defence and other activities that contribute to greater interoperability and security."

As part of his visit, the Chairman visited the Gulf of Finland Coast Guard District Command Centre and received briefings by the Finnish Border Guard and Navy on Maritime Authorities Cooperation and Common Maritime Surveillance Picture.

General Pavel also delivered an address to the Finnish National Defence Course Association on “NATO on the way to Warsaw" and responded to questions from the audience of Finnish senior civilian and military leaders.