Canada’s Chief of the Defence Staff, General Tom Lawson met with his North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) counterparts in Brussels, Belgium, from January 21 to 22, 2015. Members of the Alliance discussed key military challenges and received situations reports on events in Central and Eastern Europe and Afghanistan.
During this two-day meeting, NATO’s Chiefs of Defence also took further steps to implement the military commitments made at the NATO Wales Summit in September 2014.
“Meetings such as this one provide an excellent opportunity to discuss the security concerns facing the Alliance, and to reaffirm Canada’s steadfast commitment to NATO,” said General Lawson,.
The Military Committee is NATO’s highest military authority and is composed of Chiefs of Defence of NATO member countries. The committee plays a critical role in building on lessons learned from the Alliance’s past and present missions and helps to ensure that Allied forces remain interoperable, modern, and capable of responding whenever the Alliance may need to call upon them.
Discussions at this NATO Military Committee meeting focused on enhancing the Alliance’s readiness and responsiveness through implementation of the Readiness Action Plan in an evolving global security environment, NATO’s Resolute Support training, and strengthening NATO’s military cooperation with key regional partners.
“This meeting also offered me the opportunity to highlight the significant contributions Canada has made to NATO assurance measures, reinforcing security and stability in Central and Eastern Europe,” said General Lawson.
Canada continues to be committed to all of NATO’s core tasks, including collective defence, and provides modern, deployable capabilities to Allied missions and highly trained personnel to its command structure.
The gathering also provided General Lawson time to hold bilateral meetings with his counterparts from the Alliance, including General Sir Nicholas Haughton from the United Kingdom, Lieutenant-General Mieczyslaw Gocul from Poland, and US General Philip M. Breedlove, the Supreme Allied Commander Europe.
NATO’s Readiness Action Plan is an initiative that was approved by Allied leaders during the NATO Wales Summit in September 2014. The purpose of the Plan is to ensure that the Alliance is ready and capable to respond to new security challenges as they arise, in a firm and swift manner. The Plan includes a comprehensive package of measures to respond to the changes in the security environment in and near Europe. Particularly, it would respond to the challenges posed by Russia, as well as to any threats emanating from NATO’s Southern periphery.
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