Secretary General outlines key issues for Washington Summit at NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Bulgaria

  • 27 May. 2024 -
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  • Last updated: 27 May. 2024 14:16

Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg participated in the 2024 Spring Session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Sofia, Bulgaria on Monday (27 May 2024), focusing his remarks on preparations for the upcoming Washington Summit.

Remarks by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg at the 2024 Spring Session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Sofia

When Allied leaders meet in July, they will take decisions on strengthening deterrence and defence, long-term support to Ukraine, and NATO’s global partnerships. On deterrence and defence, Mr Stoltenberg welcomed that Allies are “investing in new, modern high-end military capabilities” and “increasing the readiness of our forces,” all underpinned by major increases in defence spending across the Alliance. On support to Ukraine, the Secretary General underlined an urgent need to step up now, but also for the long haul. “I have suggested that at the Summit, we agree a big NATO role in coordinating and providing security assistance and training for Ukraine," he said. "I strongly believe that we need a firmer, stronger institutionalized structure for the support. Ad-hoc, short term, voluntary announcements are good – but in the long term, we need more predictable, stronger support for Ukraine." On partnerships, Mr Stoltenberg stressed that “security is not regional, security is global,” pointing to the importance of working with partners from the Indo-Pacific region and beyond.

Later on Monday, the Secretary General met with Bulgarian Prime Minister Dimitar Glavchev. Mr Stoltenberg thanked the Prime Minister for Bulgaria’s “critical role in maintaining the security of the Black Sea, the Western Balkans and beyond,” including through contributions to NATO’s KFOR peacekeeping mission in Kosovo, the Alliance’s training mission in Iraq, and by hosting a NATO multinational battlegroup which helps to deter Russian aggression. He further praised Bulgaria for increasing defence spending by nearly 20% last year, and for meeting the guideline of spending 2% of GDP on defence in 2024. "Bulgaria is a reliable member of the Alliance that helps to strengthen our collective defence," said Mr Stoltenberg.