Estonia hosts major NATO meeting

  • 2010-04-23
  • Oskars Magone

Tallinn hosted the key NATO meeting, in which forein ministers discussed the future of the alliance as well as more concrete issues (photo: Estonian Foreign MInistry)

TALLINN -- NATO foreign ministers meeting in Tallinn have reached a number of landmark agreements, including handing over responsibility for security in Afghanistan to Afghan troops.

NATO forces are nonetheless set to remain in the country in a "supportive" role for some time to come.

"It will not be a pullout. It will not be a run for the exit," Rasmussen told a news conference after the meeting. "What will happen is that we hand over lead responsibility to the Afghans and our soldiers will then move into a more supportive role, but I foresee that the Afghan security forces will need our supportive assistance for quite some time," Rasmussen said.

Other topics discussed at the meeting include relations with Russia, nuclear disarmament..

“The fight against terrorism and narcotics dealing, transit through Russia to support the Afghanistan mission, and the fight against piracy are potential areas for co-operation. However, there are still many fundamental issues on which NATO and Russia have very different viewpoints,” said Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Paet, who hosted the event.

“The goal of a missile defence system is to protect the population and territory of the entire alliance from all sources of danger,”he said in reference to the controversial missile shield being constructed in Europe.

Membership for Bosnia and Herzegovina was also a topic for discussion, with a new NATO MAP for membership prepared for the country.