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NATO defence chiefs commit to strengthen alliance
Left to right: US Army General Curtis M. Scaparrotti, NATO's supreme allied commander Europe; General Petr Pavel of the Czech army, the chairman of the NATO Military Committee; and General Denis Mercier of the French air force, NATO's supreme allied commander for transformation © Jim Garamone

NATO defence chiefs commit to strengthen alliance

18/05/17Defence

NATO defence chiefs have committed to keeping the Western alliance ‘ready, relevant and able’, during a meeting of the Military Committee today (18 May) in Brussels, Belgium. 

The meeting, which discussed NATO operations and missions, comes a few days ahead of US President Donald Trump’s visit to the Middle East and Europe. This includes attending the meeting of NATO leaders in Brussels on 25 May.

Throughout the day’s discussions, NATO defence chiefs stressed their commitment to keeping the alliance ‘ready, relevant and able’, while also addressing the potential for joining the global coalition against the so-called ‘Islamic State’ (IS) group and enhancing NATO’s contribution to fighting terrorism.

The defence chiefs also spoke of the need to have a ‘consistent, co-ordinated and coherent’ approach that ‘enables NATO to provide more assistance’ to the alliance’s partners.

Speaking at a news conference at the NATO headquarters, US General Curtis Scaparrotti, supreme allied commander Europe of NATO Allied Command Operations, said the alliance “must do more to ensure a Europe that is whole, free and at peace.”

Describing the one-day meeting as “profitable”, he commended the “contributions from across the alliance to NATO operations and to the defence of Europe”.

Scaparrotti said: “I also appreciate how difficult it is in these complex times to meet all the requirements in the light of high demand and continued resource constraints to provide all the forces that we require.

“Clearly, NATO is changing. We are adapting the alliance to respond to different approaches to modern warfare, which is extremely complex and potentially vast in scale, scope and intensity.”