Press Advisories

18. 11. 2010 11:21

NATO Summit in Lisbon

On 19 and 20 November 2010, Portugal’s capital is to host a NATO summit believed to be the most important in the Alliance’s history.

Perhaps the most important item on the agenda will be the approval of NATO’s new Strategic Concept, a document defining the new challenges, tasks and goals that the Alliance will be addressing in the coming years. The establishment and adoption of this Concept is necessitated by the ongoing global transformation. Its forebear was prepared after the Cold War and took into account conflicts in the Balkans during the 1990s.

Petr Nečas, Anders Fogh Rasmussen

The strategy has been drafted by a team led by ex-US Foreign Secretary and Czech native Madeleine Albright. Besides the danger of terrorism, the new Concept also encompasses new threats, including cyber-attacks, the security impacts of climatic change and energy supply. It is also expected to define the relationship between NATO and Russia and confirm the Alliance’s historical commitment to defend the territory of its members, where an attack against one of them is considered an attack against them all; it will also provide for out-of-area operations and missions.

According to available information, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization will also decide to build its own missile defence system. Its representatives will subsequently discuss the subject with Russia’s President Dmitry Medvedev, whose country has previously criticized the missile defence idea. NATO is keen to involve Russia in the project, as the Alliance’s leaders claim that the threats the missile umbrella is to defend against are shared by Russia and NATO.

At a cost of approximately EUR 200 million over the next ten years, NATO wants to build a system that will be capable of incorporating and interlinking various national and Alliance components, such as radars and missiles. The objective is to cover not only battlefields, but also to protect the whole of NATO territory and all people living its member states.

Besides the issues outlined above, NATO representatives will discuss the situation in Afghanistan and options for the gradual withdrawal of NATO troops from the violence-plagued and poverty-stricken country. In view of the present precarious financial situation and budget cuts, a debate on reductions in the Alliance’s budget can also be expected.

The Czech Republic’s representatives at the summit will be President Václav Klaus, Prime Minister Petr Nečas, Minister of Defence Alexandr Vondra and Minister of Foreign Affairs Karel Schwarzenberg.

You can keep track of the Summit proceedings on the NATO website at www.nato.int.

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