SOFIA, Bulgaria (BulgarianMilitary.com) – The focus of the North Atlantic Council’s morning session, which took place yesterday (14th February), within the meeting of NATO Defence Ministers, was the ongoing operations and missions in Afghanistan, Kosovo, Iraq, and NATO’s maritime operations. Speaking on the issue, Bulgaria’s Defence Minister Krasimir Karakachanov said that for NATO to preserve what was achieved so far and to prevent the country from becoming once again a shelter for international terrorists, the Alliance should remain committed to Afghanistan, learned BulgarianMilitary.com.
The Bulgarian Defence Minister also noted that “The leading principle in deciding the future presence of NATO troops in Afghanistan should be “we have entered together, we withdraw together.”
Karakachanov stressed Bulgaria’s lasting contribution to NATO operations and missions in different parts of the world, as an expression of our commitment to international security and counter-terrorism efforts, as well as to reducing migratory pressure on EU countries.
The NATO Defence Ministers’ meeting ended with a working session, devoted to European defense initiatives, which was attended by the High Representative of EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini and the defense ministers of Sweden and Finland.
Yesterday, the Defence Minister Karakachanov met with the German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen. The two spoke at the NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium.
During the meeting, Minister Karakachanov underlined Bulgaria’s desire to intensify the bilateral ties in the field of defense, in particular, to increase the number of joint actions between the different armed forces and the participation of Germany in the modernization of the Bulgarian army. He emphasized the possibility German companies to participate in the projects for the modernization of the Bulgarian Navy and Land Forces by pointing out the requirement for Bulgarian firms to be also engaged.
In response, his German counterpart expressed firm conviction that German companies could be more actively involved in the process of modernization of the Bulgarian armed forces, and stated that everything will be done to find the most appropriate option for co-operation, if German companies are selected.
In Brussels, the Bulgarian Minister of Defence held a working breakfast with the Defence Minister of Ukraine Stepan Poltorak. The subject of discussion was the security environment in and around Ukraine and the progress made in the country’s defense reform.
Within the forum, Minister Karakachanov held and an informal meeting with the U.S. Secretary of Defense, Patrick Shanahan, during which the both defence ministers shared the organizational activity in the two departments for the negotiations on the project for the acquisition of a new type of combat aircraft, according to the decision of the National Assembly.
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Source: MoD of the Republic of Bulgaria