NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg addressed global security challenges at the World Economic Forum in Davos (21-23 January 2016). Mr Stoltenberg took part in a plenary session on the global security outlook together with Afghan President Dr Ashraf Ghani, US Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and the Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore Tharman Shanmugaratnam.
The Secretary General stressed the importance of NATO’s agility, adaptability and strength at a time when the lines between war and peace are blurred by hybrid warfare, terrorism and cyber attacks. “When we are strong, we are able to deter and prevent war. We want to be strong not to fight war but to avoid one, to make all understand that any attack on any Ally is doomed to fail,” Mr Stoltenberg said. He also highlighted the critical task of helping partners build their defence capacity. “We project stability not always with forces, but with training and helping to defend,” he said.
Mr Stoltenberg held bilateral talks with some of NATO’s key partners. With President Ghani, he discussed the security situation in Afghanistan and NATO’s continued commitment to the country through its mission to train, advise and assist Afghan security forces and institutions.
The Secretary General and Iraq’s Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi spoke about NATO’s plans to start training Iraqi officers in the near future in order to strengthen their ability to fight ISIL and defend their own country. He also agreed with the Tunisian Prime Minister Habib Essid on the need to further enhance cooperation and capacity building in the fight against terrorism.
In a meeting with Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili, Mr Stoltenberg reaffirmed NATO’s commitment to Georgia’s territorial integrity, and discussed the implementation of the substantial NATO-Georgia package, including the progress made by the NATO-Georgia Joint Training and Evaluation Centre.
Defence capacity building was also high on the agenda in the Secretary General ‘s meeting with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada. The Secretary General thanked Prime Minister Trudeau for Canada’s commitment to NATO and contribution to international security and cooperation. The Secretary General also met Senator Bob Corker, Chairman of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, to discuss NATO’s adaptation to complex challenges, as well as the latest trends in Allied defence spending.
L. J. De Rothschild