President Meta received and held a meeting with NATO Secretary General, Mr. Jens Stoltenberg

President Meta received and held a meeting with NATO Secretary General, Mr. Jens Stoltenberg

The President of the Republic of Albania, H. E. Mr. Ilir Meta received and held a meeting with NATO Secretary General, Mr. Jens Stoltenberg.

President Meta expressed the special pleasure that the visit of the Secretary General coincides with the 10th anniversary of our country’s NATO membership, – the strategic objective of all post 1990 Albanian governments, of all women and men of our Armed Forces, and above all, of all Albanians wherever they are.

The Head of State stressed that he fully shares Secretary General Stoltenberg’s vision that it is the duty and responsibility of each ally to strengthen the Organization by investing every effort and contribution to the service of collective defense and at the same time, that of each member country.

In this context, the President will continue to support and encourage the increase of the defense budget to 2% by the year 2024, not only as an obligation, but also as a responsibility to share the burden.

President Meta appreciated NATO’s investment into the Kuçova Air Base as a security asset for the country, the region and the Alliance as well.

The Head of State emphasized that Albania enthusiastically looks forward to the Northern Macedonia’s NATO membership soon.

This was a just decision taken at the right time that rewarded the solving of the bilateral disputes thanks to the constructive engagement of the highest ranking leaders of Northern Macedonia and Greece, and also thanks to the irreplaceable cooperation between the United States and the European Union too.

President Meta pointed out the extraordinary and vital role played by the Albanian of Northern Macedonia in support of this strategic objective.

The Head of State stressed that NATO’s enlargement and its presence in our region are crucial to consolidate the security, peace and stability of the Western Balkans.

“NATO’s presence in Kosova, in close cooperation with the institutions of Kosova and the European Union as well, contributes to a safer environment on the ground, and at the same time, it is essential for the territorial integrity of Kosova and for the stability in the region,” – stated President Meta.

Further on, the Head of State said that Albania supports Kosova’s legitimate and sovereign right to have a gradual transition of the KSF into a multiethnic army, and in full interaction with NATO.

“European and Euro-Atlantic integration represent the sole only reliable guarantee for the consolidation of peace, security and prosperity in the region, based on common values, and every sacrifice made and tirelessly working is worthy to achieve progress towards these organizations,” – said President Meta.