NATO’s Military Committee recognizes Montenegro’s progress in military and institutional reform
The NATO Military Committee, NATO's highest military authority, led by General Bartels, Chairman of the Military Committee, visited Montenegro on 27-28 October 2014 at the invitation of the Montenegrin Chief of General Staff, Admiral Dragan Samardžić. During the visit General Bartels met with the Prime Minister of Montenegro, Mr. Milo Djukanovic, the Minister of Defence, Prof Milica Pejanovic-Djurosic PhD and the Chief of General Staff, Admiral Dragan Samardžić.
On the second day of the visit, General Bartels chaired a Military Committee meeting with Montenegrin Chief of General Staff Admiral Dragan Samardžić and high level military officials in attendance. Prof Milica Pejanovic-Djurosic PhD, the Montenegrin Minister of Defence, opened the meeting highlighting the importance of the Military Committee’s visit and the opportunity it gave Montenegro to show the progress it has made so far in its reforms. During the meeting the Military Committee received presentations on Montenegro’s Armed Forces activities and their future plans implementing the Montenegrin strategic defence reviews. Among other topics discussed were regional security issues as well as continued cooperation in the Adriatic Sea area.
During the visit, the Military Committee members had the opportunity to observe the exercise “Demonstration of capabilities of units of the Armed Forces of Montenegro” as well as an equipment and weapons display at the military base “Milovan Šaranović” in Danilovgrad. The demonstration allowed the members of the NATO Military Committee to see the progress Montenegro has made regarding defence reforms.
In discussions with Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic, the Chairman of the NATO Military Commmittee stressed how Montenegro was already contributing to international security by playing a positive role in the Western Balkans. General Bartels went on to say that one of the main benefits for nations who choose to join NATO and meet the necessary conditions, is that they “are included in the strongest military Alliance in history which safeguards peace and stability for its members”.
Speaking with Admiral Samardžić, General Bartels emphasized that NATO appreciated Montenegro’s contribution to the ISAF mission in Afghanistan and their pledge for troops and financial contribution for the future Resolute Support mission. “Working with partners enhances NATO’s ability to tackle security challenges together and allows NATO to build a broad cooperative security network”, the Chairman of the NATO Military Committee said
In his press conference with Prof Milica Pejanovic-Djurosic PhD, the Montenegrin Minister of Defence, General Bartels highlighted how Montenegro was already benefitting from security cooperation with NATO. “Montenegro and NATO Allies are already closely engaged concerning maritime security and environmental protection which benefits Montenegro, a Mediterranean country with maritime economic interests and maritime infrastructure” said the Chairman of the NATO Military Committee.
Concluding the visit, General Bartels stated how he and the Military Committee members were grateful for the opportunity to get better acquainted with the priorities of the government and the armed forces of Montenegro. General Bartels said that NATO will continue to offer support, information, advice and encouragement to Montenegro.