Secretary General arrives in Germany to prepare NATO leaders’ meeting, commemorate fall of Berlin Wall
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg arrived in Berlin on Wednesday (6 November 2019) for talks with the German government and to participate in commemorations for the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Over the course of his four-day visit, the Secretary General is meeting with President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Chancellor Angela Merkel, Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, Defence Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, and members of the Bundestag’s defence and foreign affairs committees.
On Wednesday, Mr. Stoltenberg received the Manfred Wörner Medal, which recognises outstanding contributions to peace and security, at a ceremony hosted by Defence Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer. Recalling Manfred Wörner, who was NATO Secretary General at the fall of the Berlin Wall, Mr. Stoltenberg said he was “instrumental in ensuring NATO extended the hand of friendship to central and eastern Europe, paving the way for those new democracies to join our family of free nations following their sovereign decision.” Mr. Stoltenberg stressed that “we cannot take peace and democracy for granted, we must invest in them every single day.”
On Thursday, the Secretary General’s meeting with Chancellor Merkel is expected to focus on the current security environment and preparations for the meeting of NATO leaders in December in London. Mr. Stoltenberg will also deliver a speech at the Koerber Stiftung, stressing the importance of the transatlantic bond in bringing down the Berlin Wall.
On Saturday, the Secretary General will join President Steinmeier at a ceremony to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, hosted by Berlin mayor Michael Müller.