The President had a meeting with Mr Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, on 8 April to talk about the situation in Ukraine and the main topics of the next summit of NATO heads of state and government in September 2014 in the United Kingdom.
The Head of State signalled his deep concern about the current situation in Ukraine and stressed the need to avoid any direct or indirect action likely to fuel tensions. He reiterated the value he attaches to the collective defence commitments in the NATO framework and France’s wholehearted solidarity with its allies, which has prompted it to take reassurance measures.
The President also discussed the situation in Afghanistan. He paid tribute to the courage and democratic determination shown by the Afghan people during the presidential and provincial elections of 5 April, and to the role of the Afghan security forces, who ensured the security of the ballot. The next NATO summit will provide an opportunity to take stock of its forces’ presence in Afghanistan and discuss the prospects for the post-2014 period.
The Head of State recalled France’s full commitment to the Atlantic Alliance. He emphasized the importance of developing cooperation between the European Union and NATO and the need to strengthen the organization’s effectiveness in the face of current collective defence challenges, so as to enable the burden to be shared better, including among Europeans./.