Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

October 10, 2012 09:17 ET

Parliamentary Secretary Chris Alexander Participates in the NATO Defence Ministerial Meeting

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 10, 2012) - Mr. Chris Alexander, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence, today concluded his participation in the NATO Defence Ministerial meeting which took place from October 9 to 10 at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium.

During this meeting, NATO allies assessed progress to date and considered the way forward for implementing a range of capability initiatives that Leaders endorsed at the May 2012 Chicago Summit. The Chicago Defence Package, which includes Smart Defence, the NATO Forces 2020 roadmap and the Connected Forces Initiative, seeks to maintain Alliance defence capabilities in an era of fiscal austerity.

"NATO ministerial meetings are an opportunity for Allies to discuss and take decisions on pressing defence and security issues that affect the Alliance," said Mr. Alexander. "This was the first meeting of NATO Defence Ministers since the NATO Summit in Chicago last May. I am confident that we have made progress on further implementing the Chicago Defence Package. This will contribute to NATO's ongoing efforts to remain operationally effective, efficient and flexible in times of economic constraints."

In addition to considering NATO's capability initiatives, there were also sessions on NATO operations in Afghanistan and Kosovo that included representatives from non-NATO contributing nations to both missions. Their participation underscores NATO's commitment to cooperative security through its partnerships, which are an important part of ensuring that NATO remains an effective political-military alliance.

Canada's priority at NATO is to continue to work to enhance the core strength of the Alliance as an operationally focused and flexible political-military centre. By focusing on internalizing gains in interoperability and lessons learned from recent operations, pursuing innovative multinational solutions for capability development and better leveraging technology, Canada believes NATO will continue to ensure it can meet the security challenges of the 21st century.

For more information on the NATO Chicago Summit Declaration, please visit: http://www.nato.int/cps/en/SID-FCEE87E6-B712200C/natolive/official_texts_87593.htm?mode=pressrelease

For more information on the Summit Declaration on Defence Capabilities: Toward NATO Forces 2020, please visit: http://www.nato.int/cps/en/SID-FCEE87E6-B712200C/natolive/official_texts_87594.htm?mode=pressrelease

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