NATO Secretary General stresses Alliance commitment to Western Balkans

  • 08 Jun. 2016 -
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  • Last updated: 08 Jun. 2016 15:16

NATO’s commitment to security and stability in the Western Balkans and Kosovo’s political situation topped the agenda in talks between NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and Mr Hashim Thaci of Kosovo at NATO headquarters on Wednesday (8 June).

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and Hashim Thaci (Kosovo)

Mr Stoltenberg emphasized that KFOR would continue its mission to preserve a safe and secure environment in Kosovo and to guarantee freedom of movement for as long as necessary, in accordance with its UN mandate. The Secretary General underscored that any reduction in the number of NATO forces in Kosovo would be based on an improvement of conditions on the ground.

Turning to the political situation in Kosovo, the Secretary General welcomed the increased political maturity and responsibility of the institutions in Pristina but reiterated the importance of continued political reforms. Mr Stoltenberg also reiterated the importance of dialogue with Serbia on the normalisation of relations.

Mr Stoltenberg and Mr Thaci also discussed the efforts by the local authorities in dealing with the threat of terrorism and foreign fighters.

Looking ahead, the two leaders affirmed their interest in seeing the relationship between NATO and Kosovo continue to evolve.