Keep your eyes on Europe: Chirac to NATO

28th August 2006, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Aug 28, 2006 (AFP) - French President Jacques Chirac on Monday said the NATO military alliance should stay tightly focused on its original mission of upholding the security of Europe and North America.

PARIS, Aug 28, 2006 (AFP) - French President Jacques Chirac on Monday said the NATO military alliance should stay tightly focused on its original mission of upholding the security of Europe and North America.

"To seek to commit the Alliance to non-military operations, in ad-hoc partnerships, technological adventures, in insufficiently prepared enlargement could only distort its vocation," he said in a broad foreign policy speech.

"NATO's very legitimacy" is at stake, he said, "as a military organisation guarantor of the collective security of the European and north American allies".

Chirac, whose country opposed the deployment of NATO troops in Iraq and recently in Lebanon, was addressing an annual meeting of French ambassadors in Paris.

The French position on NATO enlargement clashes with that of the United States, which has called for Croatia, Macedonia and Albania to be admitted to the 26-member alliance. Ukraine has also voiced hopes of joining.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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