Secretary General: NATO is committed to peace and stability in the Western Balkans
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg commended Bosnia and Herzegovina for its contributions to Euro-Atlantic security during a visit to Sarajevo on Thursday (2 February 2017). Meeting with Mladen Ivanić, Chairman of the Tripartite Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the other members of Presidency, the Secretary General welcomed Bosnia’s reforms in the defence and security sector. He also welcomed the adoption of the Defence Review and the implementation plan as signs of "real progress and real commitment." Mr. Stoltenberg stressed that NATO stands ready to activate the Membership Action Plan once all immovable defence properties have been registered to the state.
Accompanied by Defence Minister Marina Pendeš, the Secretary General visited the troops of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina. He thanked them for their service and, in particular, their contributions to NATO’s mission in Afghanistan. The Secretary General also met with personnel of the NATO Headquarters in Sarajevo, commanded by Brigadier General Giselle Wilz. He thanked them for their efforts to bring peace, security and stability to the Western Balkans, and underlined NATO’s continued commitment to the region.
Addressing high-school and university students in Sarajevo, the Secretary General outlined NATO’s close partnership with Bosnia and Herzegovina. He underlined that this partnership is fundamentally about improving the everyday lives of people in the country. He encouraged Bosnia and Herzegovina to continue to fight corruption and ensure that defence institutions are under democratic control.
During his visit, the Secretary General also met with the Chairman of the Council of Ministers, Mr. Denis Zvizdić, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Igor Crnadak, the Minister of Security Dragan Mektić, and Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Josip Brkić, as well as leading members of the Parliamentary Assembly and representatives of the international community.