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Foreign Ministers' Meetings, 19-20 May 2016



Foreign Ministers' Meetings, 19-20 May 2016

NATO Foreign Ministers' Meetings took place on 19 and 20 May at NATO HQ. The Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni and Ambassador Claudio Bisogniero participated in the event

The meetings focused on four main issues: Montenegro's accession to the Atlantic Alliance, strengthening stability in the neighbourhood, cooperation with the European Union and extension of Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan.

The 28 Ministers of Foreign Affairs signed the Accession Protocol with Montenegro: the country can now participate in all NATO meetings as an observer. Once all Allies have ratified the Protocol, Montenegro will become the 29th member of the Atlantic Alliance.

As concerns stability in the neighbourhood, Ministers agreed to pursue ongoing initiatives, e.g. training for Iraqi officers in Jordan, cyber defence projects with Jordan and development of a national intelligence centre for Tunisia. To the east, NATO provides capacity-building help to Georgia and Moldova, and helps support Ukraine with its ongoing reforms. Ministers also discussed how the Alliance could further support the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL, including with AWACS surveillance planes.

As per the cooperation with the European Union, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and the High Representative of the Union for foreign affairs and security policy Federica Mogherini announced that the two organizations will work even more closely to counter illegal migration in the Aegean Sea, and will pursue the formal arrangements on cyber defence. Moreover, NATO and the EU are developing new Playbooks to closely coordinate when facing hybrid threats, and are ready to exercise more together.

Lastly, as concerns Afghanistan, Ministers agreed to sustain Resolute Support Mission beyond 2016. Despite the courage and determination showed by Afghan Security Forces, Afghanistan continues to face serious security challenges. This is why NATO will continue with its training, advice and assistance activities, a decision welcomed by the Afghan Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Read and watch the Ministerial timeline at our Storify.