The main topics of the meeting will be the increase in military spending of the member countries, strengthening of defense in Europe, discussion of the prospects for the development of the Alliance and new types of threats to its security.
LONDON – The leaders of NATO member States and governments gathered for a plenary session on Wednesday. The meeting is being held as part of the Alliance summit, which takes place at the heavily guarded Grove hotel in Hertfordshire near London.
“NATO remains the only platform that allows the United States and Europe to discuss, make decisions and take joint actions daily to ensure the safety of nearly one billion people.
Whatever our contradictions, we will remain united around our main task-to protect each other. One for all, and all for one,” said Alliance Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, opening the meeting.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, speaking after Stoltenberg as host of the meeting, stressed the importance of full funding for the Alliance, citing the United Kingdom as an example. “We spend 2% of GDP on defense and are proud to be the biggest contributor to NATO’s combat readiness program among all European partners,” Johnson said.
Although the summit itself is billed as a two-day event, the current plenary session will be the only one at the summit and relatively short-lived. According to the program of the event, only three hours are allotted for the working session. Thus, each of the leaders of the 29 countries of the Alliance and the Secretary-General has no more than six minutes to speak at the round table.
As early as 13:30, a joint statement of the summit participants will be distributed, and Stoltenberg will hold a press conference.
The main topics during the meeting of 29 leaders will be the increase of the military expenses of members of the organization countries, the strengthening of defense in Europe, discussion of prospects of development of NATO and new threats to Alliance security. According to Stoltenberg, for the first time in the history of the Alliance, the summit will discuss the strengthening of China and the growth of its military capabilities.
The Grove hotel itself is taken in several rings of protection. Fences have been erected around it, which can only be overcome by leaders of states, members of their delegations, summit staff and accredited journalists. The only way for media workers to get to the hotel is by shuttle, which takes 15 minutes from the accreditation center in Watford. Only one narrow road leads to the hotel and to avoid traffic jams from shuttles and motorcades of official delegations, cars are allowed at long intervals.