Statement on Behalf of NATO Countries: Statement at the Ministerial Council

This statement is delivered on behalf of the following participating States: Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America as well as my own country, Lithuania.

Mr. Chairperson,

Arms control, disarmament, and non-proliferation continue to play an important role in the achievement of our security objectives. Both the success and failure of these efforts can have a direct impact on our security environment

We reaffirm our long-standing commitment to conventional arms control as a key element of Euro-Atlantic security and emphasize the importance of full implementation and compliance to rebuild trust and confidence. Russia’s unilateral military activity in and around Ukraine has undermined peace, security, and stability across the region, and its selective implementation of the Vienna Document and Open Skies Treaty and long-standing non-implementation of the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe Treaty (CFE) have eroded the positive contributions of these arms control instruments. We call on Russia to fully adhere to its commitments. We are determined to preserve, strengthen, and modernize conventional arms control in Europe, based on key principles and commitments, including reciprocity, transparency, and host nation consent.

We underscore the importance of substantially modernising the Vienna Document to ensure its continued relevance in the evolving security environment, including through its substantive update in 2016.

Earlier this week, Montenegro was invited to begin accession talks to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. We congratulate Montenegro on this historic achievement.

Mr. Chairperson,

The countries subscribing to this statement request its inclusion in the journal of this Ministerial Meeting.