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Statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic on the new NATO Secretary General

 

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs welcomes the agreement of the NATO Member States to appoint Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs Jaap de Hoop Scheffer new Secretary General of the North Atlantic Alliance.(23/9/2003)

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs welcomes the agreement of the NATO Member States to appoint Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs Jaap de Hoop Scheffer new Secretary General of the North Atlantic Alliance.

The Czech Republic played an important role in the process of seeking the consensus - the Head of the Czech Delegation to NATO, Ambassador Karel Kovanda, as the doyen of Permanent Representatives of the North Atlantic Council, coordinated the debate of the NATO countries on the selection of a new NATO Secretary General.

The consensus reached on the appointment of new Secretary General was confirmed at today's session of the North Atlantic Council, convened to the NATO headquarters in Brussels for this purpose by NATO Deputy Secretary General Alessandro Minuto Rizzo.

The Czech Republic is convinced that the experience of Jaap de Hoop Scheffer is a guarantee that the demanding transformation of the North Atlantic Alliance will successfully advance under his guidance.

Jaap de Hoop Scheffer participated, in his capacity as Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs, in the decisions made by NATO at its Prague Summit last November on the transformation of NATO into an organization to confront new security challenges. The Summit decided in particular about the invitation of another seven countries of Central and Eastern Europe to join the Alliance, about new defence capabilities and on new relations with the Alliance's partners.

Jaap de Hoop Scheffer is the third representative of the Netherlands appointed to hold the position of NATO Secretary General, after Dirk U. Stikker (1961 - 1964) and Joseph M.A.H. Luns (1971 - 1984).

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