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Ask the Government

                               Ask the Government

PM Marković's press statement following meeting of heads of state and government of NATO member states in Brussels

PM Marković
Published date 26.05.2017 08:06 | Author PR Service

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PR ServicePrime Minister Duško Marković
Press statement after the Meeting of the Heads of State and Government of NATO member states
Brussels, 25 May 2017

This is a great day for Montenegro, an overture for 5 June, when we will hand over the instruments of ratification in Washington and thereby formalise membership in NATO. Finally, on 7 June, the flag of Montenegro, the 29th member of the most powerful Alliance, will be flying here in the new NATO headquarters in Brussels.

We are especially honoured because today at the meeting of heads of state and government of NATO members, Montenegro practically took its rightful place at the table, between the Netherlands and Luxembourg. Our country was welcomed as a future ally and I am pleased to have felt as an equal member of the Euro-Atlantic family.

I wish to thank all the members of the Alliance, as well as the Secretary-General Stoltenberg and his team, for the confidence they have had in Montenegro throughout the accession process.

This is, I would say, a historic moment for NATO. The Alliance will not only obtain a new member but a new home as well, a magnificent building where our Permanent Delegation will be located as well. This is the future address of Montenegro - the 29 members of the Alliance.

I am greatly honoured to have attended the inauguration ceremony of the new headquarters and a working dinne, which discussed the future of the Euro-Atlantic area. Member states' commitment to strengthening the Alliance through allocation of 2% of GDP from national defence budgets by 2024 was confirmed, in line with the obligations set out at the summits in Wales and Warsaw. The Alliance also demonstrated its determination to be actively involved in the fight against ISIL and to continue its cooperation with the European Union.

I took the opportunity to emphasise our commitment to actively contributing to the policies of NATO, including the fight against terrorism, defence and deterrence, as well as to further efforts towards projecting stability in the Western Balkans and beyond.

We are only ten days away from becoming a member and we are looking forward to perpetuate another historic moment for our country. Nearly a hundred years after the disappearance from the political map of Europe and ten years after the restoration of independence, Montenegro is deservedly coming back to the world's largest political scene. We are not left out and the doors are opened for us to sit equally side by side with the most organised alliance of countries in the history of humanity and decide on the most pressing issues. It is clear that this means new and improved international position for our country.

I believe this is an important day for our neighbours. I am convinced that Montenegro, as a NATO member, will further contribute to the Western Balkans' stability. I can assure you that we will continue to strongly support the Euro-Atlantic integration of other aspiring countries in the region. We will be the promoter of the idea of the Alliance in the region, a clear example that its door is open.Finally.

I also believe this is a great day for all citizens of Montenegro - for those who understand and support our country's membership in the Alliance, and for those who oppose it. All the citizens will enjoy benefits from our membership through advanced rule of law and more chances for economic development and the creation of better conditions for a better standard of living for every citizen and every family.