BRUSSELS - NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg is not seeking a further mandate extension and is set to leave his post as planned in autumn this year, the defense alliance has said.
"The mandate of Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has been extended three times and he has served for a total of almost nine years," NATO Spokesperson Oana Lungescu said on Saturday night at dpa's request.
"The Secretary General's term comes to an end in October of this year and he has no intention to seek another extension of his mandate."
Stoltenberg's mandate was extended until 30 September 2023 in March last year, shortly after the beginning of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Recently, there has been speculation that the 63-year-old's term in office could be extended again amid the conflict in Ukraine.
Meanwhile, the German newspaper Die Welt, referring to sources in diplomatic circles, reported that the members of the alliance intend to extend Stoltenberg's term of office until April 2024, taking into account his excellent performance as NATO chief, as well as the fact that the war in Ukraine continues. The extension would guarantee stability in the leadership of the alliance in this difficult time, in addition, member states want to give Stoltenberg the opportunity to lead the NATO 75th anniversary summit scheduled for April 2024 in Washington, diplomats said.