Lute: A historic event for Montenegro

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Signing of the Montenegro’s NATO Accession Protocol is a historic event and the message that the alliance’s door remains open, said the US Ambassador to NATO Douglas Lute.

He said that tomorrow’s session of the ministerial meeting, during which the protocol on the accession of Montenegro will be signed, would be a historic one, because it will be the seventh accession protocol signed in 67 years of NATO’s history.

He said the dialogue between NATO and Montenegro had lasted since December, adding that they were ready for the next step – signing of the accession protocol.

“This document will be signed by all 28 member states and it will be ratified in the parliaments of those countries. This process takes months, but in the end, when the 28 parliaments ratify the protocol, ratification in Montenegrin Parliament follows and we will have the 29th member state”, said Lute at the press conference in NATO headquarters in Brussels.

He added that an important step on that path would be taken tomorrow.

Lute said that it was more than a procedural, bureaucratic step, having in mind Article 10 of the Washington Treaty, which emphasises NATO’s openness to new members, the European countries that share the alliance’s values – democracy, rule of law – and may contribute to the collective defence.

He called in mind that the decision must be made by consensus, and that all 28 member states must agree on the admission of a new member state.

He said he cannot predict when the US Senate will ratify the protocol because, as he explained, the Senate has its own work agenda and it is difficult to determine when they will decide on this particular matter.

“I can say that in the past six enlargements lasted for months. This is not something that Montenegrins should expect to happen soon because this process takes time”, explained Lute.

Source: Cafe Del Montenegro