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Current Security Threats in Focus during the NATO Foreign Affairs Ministerial Meeting

Current Security Threats in Focus during the NATO Foreign Affairs Ministerial Meeting

4.12.2018 | Aktivity štátnych tajomníkov

František Ružička, State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic, represented Slovakia at the regular autumn NATO foreign affairs ministerial meeting on 4 December 2018.


The session started with the discussion between the Alliance and the partners from Georgia and Ukraine.  The talks confirmed the ongoing strong support of the allies for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of their partners.  The foreign affairs ministers of Georgia and Ukraine detailed the current developments in the Azov Sea and the Kerch Strait and drew attention to the destabilizing activities by Russia. They deemed the situation to be extremely serious. In his address, State Secretary Ružička conveyed Slovakia’s concerns and called for a de-escalation of tensions as soon as possible and for a peaceful resolution of the conflict. “We will continue to closely monitor the developments, also with regard to our upcoming OSCE Chairmanship.  Ukraine and Georgia belong among our priorities, which we also want to focus on from the point of view of adhering to international law and respecting territorial integrity,” said Ružička. The allies further talked with their partners about the opportunities and the ways of reinforcing the cooperation in the region of the Black Sea.  


Transatlantic security including issues concerning burden sharing were the second point within the North Atlantic Council in Foreign Ministers' session.  The allies agreed that the Alliance is an indisputable guarantee of security in Europe and any efforts to reinforce the European defense itself would be welcome to supplement but not duplicate the roles played by NATO.  U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo informed the allies about the violation of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty by Russia.  The minsters condemned this violation and jointly asked Russia to urgently provide for a full and verifiable compliance with the Treaty. “Pursuant to this statement, Slovakia is open to further dialogue with Russia and believes that all possibilities to get Russia back to the negotiating table will be used. Although the Treaty has a bilateral character, it is a key pillar for European security. We are not interested in arms competition that would automatically affect all of us,” stated Ružička in his address.   


The meeting of the NATO Foreign Affairs Ministers will continue on Wednesday (5 December 2018) with the negotiations on the Western Balkans with Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, in attendance. This meeting will concentrate especially on the reform progress made by Macedonia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.  The final talks will be geared towards international support for Afghanistan to help in reforms and the building of the state.

Autor: U.S. Department of State Autor: U.S. Department of State