NATO Secretary General discusses impact of COVID-19 with military commanders
Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg addressed NATO military commanders by videoconference on Thursday (28 May 2020). The conference, hosted by Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR), General Tod D. Wolters, provided an opportunity for commanders across Allied Command Operations to discuss the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on NATO missions, operations and activities.
The Secretary General praised the leadership of NATO commanders in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, and highlighted the key role of the armed forces in supporting civilian efforts. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Allied militaries have helped with logistics and planning, field hospitals, the transport for patients, repatriation of citizens abroad, disinfection of public areas, and at border crossings.
The Secretary General also discussed the importance of strengthening resilience through civil and military preparedness, and countering disinformation and propaganda.
He noted that while we face the current crisis, other security challenges have not diminished. “NATO’s core task to defend almost 1 billion citizens is unchanged. NATO forces must remain ready, vigilant and prepared” he said.
NATO Defence Ministers will meet in June, and will discuss the Alliance’s response to the current crisis and take important decisions to strengthen NATO’s deterrence and defence.