New NATO Secretary General Seeks Constructive Relations with Russia

World | October 1, 2014, Wednesday // 18:31|  views

New NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg gives his first press conference at Alliance headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, 01 October 2014. Photo by EPA/BGNES

Jens Stoltenberg, former Prime Minister of Norway, began his appointment Wednesday as NATO's new Secretary General.

The Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is appointed for a four-year term in office which may be extended.

“The crisis in Ukraine, caused by Russia’s military intervention, is a major challenge to Euro-Atlantic security.  The summit sets out our clear position. NATO does not seek confrontation with Russia. But we cannot and will not compromise on the principles on which our Alliance, and the security in Europe and North America rest,” Stoltenberg declared in a Wednesday statement.

Describing the ceasefire in Ukraine as an opportunity, he noted that Russia was still capable of destabilizing Ukraine and it remained in breach of international law. 

“We will continue our full support for an independent, sovereign and stable Ukraine.  Each European nation must be free to decide its own course. And we need to see a clear change in Russia’s actions.  A change which demonstrates compliance with international law.  And with Russia’s international obligations and responsibilities,” the new Secretary General of NATO stated in his first press conference.

He also suggested that there was no contradiction between a strong NATO and our continued effort to build a constructive relationship with Russia, adding that “only a strong NATO can build such a relationship for the benefit of Euro-Atlantic security.”


Tags: Jens Stoltenberg, NATO, NATO Secretary General, ukraine crisis

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