With a weakened EU, NATO will become even more important, Jens Stoltenberg says, commenting on the British decision to withdraw from EU.
– We have got a Europe with a weakened EU, Stoltenberg said to NTB on the decision of Britain, which is the second largest economy and the largest military contributor in Europe, to leave the union.
Stoltenberg has previously warned against a fragmented Europe and said it will be an advantage for the British to remain in the EU.
– But now the British have made their choice, it is a choice everyone must respect, and we also have to look ahead. Now NATO will become even more important as the framework for cooperation between European countries and between Europe and the United States, he said after discussing the situation with British Defense Secretary Michael Fallon by phone Friday.
– Now NATO will be the setting in which Britain meet other European countries. This makes it even more important to develop cooperation between the EU and NATO, he says.
Britain’s place in NATO will remain unchanged, Stoltenberg emphasizes.
– United Kingdom remains a strong and committed NATO ally and will continue to play a leading role, the NATO commander states.
– As we face more instability and uncertainty, NATO becomes important than ever before as a platform for cooperation between European member states.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today