Washington: US and NATO officials have said Pakistan may have to miss future NATO consultations as well if it fails to attend the Chicago Summit, scheduled to be held on May 20-21, the largest meeting NATO has ever organised, with around 60 countries and organisations represented.
NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said 2014 would mark the end of NATO’s combat role, but not the end of its engagement with Afghanistan, reports The Dawn.
“NATO is committed to an enduring partnership with Afghanistan, and to providing the training which the Afghan forces will still need, beyond 2014,” he said.
“In Chicago, we will start to spell out our commitment to help finance the Afghan security forces of the future, as part of an international community effort, and together with the Afghans themselves,” he added.
After the Chicago summit, NATO will hold an expanded ISAF meeting including 22 non-NATO partners and a separate meeting with a group of 13 partner nations to recognise their important contributions to the current and recent NATO missions in Afghanistan, Kosovo and Libya.
“We are planning on having a meeting in ISAF format, which is with the participants in the Afghanistan mission and the countries that support that. So that brings in Afghanistan, its neighbours, all of the countries like the UAE, et cetera, that participate in ISAF,” said US State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland.
“There is going to be a second special meeting, NATO plus countries we’re calling the Chicago partners, and these are a group of 13 countries who are some of NATO’s most active partners in terms of working in operations,” she added.
The 13 are Australia, Austria, Finland, Georgia, Japan, Jordan, Korea, Morocco, New Zealand, Qatar, Sweden, Switzerland and the UAE. Each of those countries has participated in at least one NATO operation, and many of them have participated in two or more.