by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg with the Prime Minister of Spain, Pedro Sánchez
Prime Minister Sánchez, dear Pedro,
Thank you so much for hosting me and my delegation, it's great to be back in Madrid, this beautiful city and to once again experience the great hospitality of Spain. And Spain, this country, which is really close to my heart, so thank you so much for hosting me.
At the NATO Summit in Brussels this year, Allied leaders adopted an ambitious agenda for the future of transatlantic security and defence.
To deal with a more unpredictable and dangerous world.
We see rising strategic competition.
More aggressive Russian behaviour.
And China flexing its economic and military might to intimidate others.
We will also continue and we are continuing to see challenges in our southern neighbourhood.
With instability and terrorist threats in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Sahel.
During our meeting, we discussed how NATO can step up and contribute more to the stability in our Southern neighbourhood.
We can only tackle these challenges together.
Europe and North America, united in NATO.
And we need to keep adapting for the future.
And that is exactly what we will do at the Madrid Summit next year.
I am therefore happy that we are now able to confirm that, the Summit in Madrid will take place - as you said - on the 29th and 30th of June.
And I am grateful to Spain and to you, Prime Minister, for hosting all NATO leaders and the NATO Summit here in Madrid.
The Summit will also mark the fortieth anniversary of Spain’s accession to our Alliance.
This accession anchored Spain among the free and democratic countries of the transatlantic community.
And also paved the way for your country’s membership in the EU a few years later.
For four decades, Spain has worked together with Allies on both sides of the Atlantic for a safer and more peaceful world.
So Prime Minister, under your leadership Spain continues to be a highly valuable ally making important contributions to our shared security.
Hosting Aegis Ballistic Missile Defence ships at Rota; and our air operations command at Torrejón.
Contributing to our training mission in Iraq, our multinational battlegroup in Latvia, Baltic Air Policing, maritime deployments,
And Spain is also supporting Turkey’s air defences.
So Spain is really contributing to our shared security, to our collective defence in many different ways, and we are extremely grateful for all your contributions.
Spain is also a strong supporter of NATO’s partnership with the European Union.
NATO-EU cooperation has reached unprecedented levels in the past years.
And I am now working on a new joint declaration with President Ursula Von der Leyen and President Charles Michel by December this year to chart the way forward to further strengthen NATO-EU cooperation.
When NATO leaders meet in Madrid at the end of June, we will take important decisions to implement our ambitious NATO 2030 agenda.
Boosting our resilience and cyber defences.
Sharpening our technological edge.
And addressing the security impact of climate change.
We will also adopt NATO’s next Strategic Concept.
The Madrid Strategic Concept will reflect the new security environment, recommit to our values, and reaffirm our unity.
Ensuring that our Alliance is fit for the future.
So Prime Minister Sánchez, dear Pedro, thank you again for your strong leadership.
And for Spain’s strong commitment to NATO.
I look forward to working with you as we prepare for the Summit in Madrid.