Пресс-конференция Генерального секретаря НАТО Йенса Столтенберга по итогам встречи Североатлантического совета на уровне министров обороны

  • 15 Feb. 2017 -
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  • Last updated 16-Feb-2017 10:56

(As delivered)

Good afternoon.

We have just finished a meeting where NATO Defence Ministers discussed how NATO is adapting to a more demanding security environment. At no time since the end of the Cold War have we faced greater challenges to our security. Neither Europe nor North America can effectively deal with this on their own. Our Alliance is as much needed as ever. NATO is good for Europe. And it is good for North America. We are all safer when we stand together. Today Ministers all agreed on the importance of the Trans-Atlantic relationship for meeting the key challenges to our security.

And I welcome the clear message from Secretary Mattis, on the importance of the Trans-Atlantic partnership and the message from all the other Allies that we need to strengthen the Alliance in times of turmoil.

Since 2014 NATO’s deterrence and defence posture has significantly adapted. We have tripled the size of the NATO Response Force to 40,000. We have established a 5,000 strong Very High Readiness Joint Task Force. Ready to move in a matter of days. And we have set up 8 small headquarters in the eastern part of our Alliance. Stepped up our air policing, our training and exercises. Strengthened our maritime presence. Bolstered our cyber defences. And, as we speak, we are deploying four multinational battlegroups to the Baltic countries and Poland.

We are also increasing our presence in the south east of the Alliance. So our deterrence and defence posture is solid. Today we discussed the importance of sustaining this effort over time. This will be crucial.

Defence is not just about what we do at home. It is as much about what happens beyond our borders. So we have agreed to strengthen our contributions to projecting stability. To enable local forces to protect their countries and to fight terrorism. We have moved from a large combat operation to a train, assist and advise mission in Afghanistan. We started to support the Coalition fighting ISIL through AWACS air surveillance. We have established a training and capacity building programme in Iraq. Increased our support to partners across North Africa and the Middle East. And opened a regional centre in Kuwait, together with our partners in the Gulf.

We have deployed ships to the Aegean Sea to help curb the flow of migrants and refugees. We will set up a hub for the south in Naples. And we have established comprehensive packages in support of Georgia and Ukraine. 

We continue a significant presence in the Western Balkans to ensure stability in the region. And we are working more closely with the European Union than ever before.

But we also agree that NATO has untapped potential when it comes to training local forces and building local capacity. We have experience, tried and tested capabilities, staying power and a network of 41 partners around the world who are ready to help and work with us. So we discussed how we can better use NATO for the future.

All this, all these efforts, must be underpinned by adequate resources and fair burden sharing. In 2014, we decided to stop the cuts in defence spending, gradually increase and move towards spending 2 % of GDP on defence within a decade. Our progress so far has been good. In 2015, we stopped the cuts. In 2016, 22 Allies increased their defence budgets. This is significant. And the figures we published yesterday showed a healthy increase of 3.8% in real terms across Europe and Canada when it comes to defence spending. This means $10 billion US dollars more for defence. Step by step, we are moving in the right direction. But, there is still a very long way to go. And you know that the picture is mixed, some Allies have really started to increase, some Allies are still struggling with any increase of their defence budgets. Only 5 Allies meet our guideline of spending 2 % of GDP on defence. So we discussed how we can sustain the positive momentum, and speed up national efforts to meet our commitments. For instance, through national plans and milestones to ensure steady progress. This is a discussion that we are starting today and expect the discussion to continue and also be an issue that will be addressed by Heads of State and Government when they meet in Brussels in May. Our aim is to give our ambition for fairer burden-sharing a strong boost when we meet in Brussels in May.

With that, I am ready to take your questions.