NATO foreign ministers mark 75 years of alliance, discuss more support for Ukraine

NATO foreign ministers meet on Thursday to celebrate the 75th anniversary of their alliance, having agreed to start planning for a greater role in coordinating military aid to Ukraine.

On the second day of a meeting in Brussels, the ministers will mark the signing in Washington on April 4, 1949, of the North Atlantic Treaty that established the transatlantic political and military alliance.

"As we face a more dangerous world, the bond between Europe and North America has never been more important," NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Wednesday.

NATO began with 12 members from North America and Europe, founded in response to growing fears that the Soviet Union posed a military threat to European democracies.

At its heart is the concept of collective defence, the idea that an attack on one member is considered an attack on all, giving US military protection to Western Europe.

Seventy-five years later, NATO has 32 members and has retaken a central role in world affairs, after Russia's war in Ukraine prompted European governments to view Moscow once more as a major security threat.

NATO's two newest members, Finland and Sweden, joined in direct response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

"We will continue to strengthen our alliance," Stoltenberg told reporters. "And we will continue to work with our partners across the globe for peace and security."

On Wednesday, NATO ministers agreed to start planning for a greater NATO role in coordinating security assistance and training for Ukraine.


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