NATO Secretary General discusses global challenges with leaders in New York

  • 21 Sep. 2016 -
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  • Last updated: 22 Sep. 2016 14:00

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg met with several world leaders on Wednesday (21 September 2016) in the margins of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

Bilateral meeting between NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko

In talks with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, Mr. Stoltenberg welcomed Iraq’s progress in the fight against ISIL. Both leaders agreed on the importance of NATO’s support to Iraq in building more effective security and defence forces. At the Warsaw Summit, Allies agreed to provide in-country training and capacity building support to Iraq, complementing existing NATO training for Iraqi officers in Jordan. 

Meeting with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, the Secretary General reaffirmed NATO’s strong political and practical support for Ukraine. In Warsaw, Allies endorsed a Comprehensive Assistance Package to help Ukraine better provide for its own security. 

The Secretary General also held a separate meeting with OSCE Secretary General, Ambassador Lamberto Zannier, to discuss strengthening cooperation between the Alliance and the OSCE. The two leaders exchanged views on the security situation in Ukraine and efforts to modernise the Vienna Document on military transparency.

Later on Wednesday, the Secretary General met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. The two leaders exchanged views on a range of issues, including risk reduction and transparency measures between NATO and Russia, the crisis in Syria, and the situation in Ukraine. Both leaders agreed that the NATO-Russia Council is an important forum for increasing transparency and predictability. The Secretary General underlined that NATO remains open to using military lines of communication to address issues of shared concern.

In separate talks with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Mr. Stoltenberg reaffirmed the importance of NATO’s cooperation with the UN to improve training for peacekeepers. He stressed that both organisations share a common interest in enhancing the protection of civilians in conflict zones.

The Secretary General also met with UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson to discuss the Alliance’s efforts to build up the defence capabilities of NATO's partners in Europe, as well as in the Middle East and North Africa. They also agreed on the importance of defence spending, and Mr. Stoltenberg commended the UK for continuing to spend 2% of GDP on defence.