Standing shoulder to shoulder, the President of the EU Commission and the NATO secretary general pledged to pool their resources and expertise in a joint task force to counter threats to Europe’s infrastructure.
Ursula von der Leyen and Jens Stoltenberg held a news conference at the EU Commission College Seminar to announce a third joint declaration on NATO-European Union cooperation had been signed the day before.
Mrs von der Leyen said it was clear Europe’s adversaries and competitors were prepared to exploit the continent’s openness and transparency to undermine its security.
"We have seen the sabotage of Nord Stream that has shown that we need to be ready and that we need to confront this new type of threat, “said Mrs von der Leyen. “So today we are launching an EU-NATO task force for resilient critical infrastructure. This is a task force where our experts from NATO and the European Union will work hand in hand to identify key threats to our critical infrastructure.”
Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said fierce fighting by Ukrainians in the defence of their homeland in Bakhmut and Soledar emphasised the need for NATO to step up its support.
He said: “The partnership between the European Union and NATO is more important than ever, because Russia`s brutal invasion of Ukraine has fundamentally changed our security.”
There are 21 EU states in the NATO alliance of 30 countries.