NATO Secretary General attends opening of UN General Assembly

  • 21 Sep. 2021 - 22 Sep. 2021
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  • Last updated: 21 Sep. 2021 20:50

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg joined world leaders at the opening of the 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York on Tuesday (21 September 2021). This year’s General Assembly marks the sixth that Mr Stoltenberg has attended at the helm of the Alliance.

While in New York, the Secretary General is meeting with UN Secretary General António Guterres, as well as leaders and officials from NATO Allies, including Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, and US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan. He is also meeting with other leaders and officials including Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Colombian President Iván Duque, Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, and Vjosa Osmani of Kosovo. 

NATO and the United Nations share a commitment to maintaining international peace and security, and the two organisations have expanded cooperation over the past decade. Priority areas for joint work include NATO support to UN peace operations, countering terrorism, the protection of civilians, and the Women, Peace and Security agenda. NATO has contributed to developing UN standards to counter improvised explosive devices, and has provided experts to join UN training efforts for peacekeeping personnel. In 2020, Allied airlift supported the World Food Programme with the delivery of a field hospital to Ghana as part of the response to COVID-19.

The Secretary General will conclude his visit to the United States on Thursday by participating in the Change of Command at Allied Command Transformation in Norfolk, Virginia. At the ceremony, General Philippe Lavigne of the French Air and Space Force will succeed General André Lanata as Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, one of NATO’s two strategic commanders.