Meeting of Poland and US presidents
The Warsaw NATO Summit took place in Warsaw, Poland on July 8-9, 2016. There were 61 official delegations representing 28 NATO countries and many international organizations. There were over 2,000 official delegates.
More than 2,000 journalists from all over the world covered the event.
Journalist, Andrew Mikołajczyk in media room.
The United States delegation was led by President Barack Obama with John Kerry, Secretary of State, Aston Carter, US Secretary of Defence and 250 other delegates.
Warsaw – National Stadium
On July 8-9, 2016, President Obama and the heads of state and government of our 27 NATO allies, plus new observer state Montenegro, gathered in Warsaw, Poland, for an important NATO Summit, the 27th since the signing of the Washington Treaty that established the Alliance in 1949. The last NATO Summit was organized in Wales, in September 2014.
The NATO Summit unified efforts as allied leaders focused on defense, deterrence, and projecting stability beyond NATO’s borders, ensuring the Alliance adapts to meet the full range of 21st century security challenges. To the east, Russia’s aggression against Ukraine threatens our vision of a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace. To the south, the terrorist threat from ISIL poses a growing danger to more allies, while the refugee and migrant crisis poses new challenges to Europe.
NATO Summit ensured its capability to respond to the full spectrum of security challenges from any direction. Jens Stoltenberg emphasized NATO transparency in dealing with other countries like Russia. He mentioned about meeting between NATO Ambassador and Russia Ambassador, which took place on July 13, 2016.
Jens Stolberg, NATO Secretary.
During the NATO Summit NATO signed cooperation with the European Union as key to dealing with the evolving security environment and challenges faced by both organizations in concrete areas, such as fighting hybrid and cyber threats, supporting our partners in defence capacity building, and increasing maritime security. This document was signed by NATO Secretary – Jens Stoltenberg, President Of European Commission – Donald Tusk and President of the European Commission – Jean Claude.
Poland President Andrzej Duda met with the United States President and expressed hope that it “will show unity and will strengthen the Polish-U.S. partnership, after a meeting. U.S. President Barack Obama stressed that Poland was one of the most committed and important allies.
The meeting of the Polish and U.S. presidents focused on strengthening the military presence on NATO’s eastern flank and Brexit. President Obama voiced concern regarding the Constitutional Tribunal in Poland during the meeting on July 8, 2016.
Poland President Andrzej Duda
Andrzej Duda explained that on the one hand, the point was to demonstrate unity and coherence regarding territorial security, solidarity and indivisibility within the North Atlantic Alliance, and stressed the importance of the fact that „we are speaking with one voice, that we are together.”
The Polish president expressed his gratitude „for the understanding that security is where the strongest armed forces in the world are present,” namely the armed forces of the United States.
President Duda and other leaders offered President Obama their condolences for the families of the police officers who died on duty in Dallas, Texas.
President Obama stressed that Poland would surely notice NATO’s increased presence. „As treaty allies, we have a solemn, binding Article 5 duty to defend each other. And in this obligation, we will never waver. These are not just words – they are backed up by deeds,” the U.S. president declared.
„In the United States, we consider Poland one of our most committed and important allies. Poland is a leader in NATO as one of the nations that pays its full share – 2 percent of GDP – for our collective security,” President Obama stressed.
The U.S. president thanked Poland for its continued strong support for Ukraine’s efforts to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity in the face of Russian aggression. He stressed it was very important to provide Ukraine with the assistance it needs to strengthen its military and to pursue political and economic reforms.
There were meetings between NATO and Ukraine: Jens Stolberg, NATO Secretary and Petr Poroszenko, Ukraine President. They held also a press conference together.
President Obama said that the United States and Poland were united in insisting that sanctions remain in place until Russia fully meets its obligations under the Minsk agreements.
The U.S. president also congratulated Poland on recently celebrating the 225th anniversary of its constitution – the oldest written constitution in Europe. „And this speaks to the long yearning of the Polish people for freedom and independence,” he said.
Group photo – Polish Presidential Office.
President Obama also said that he had expressed to President Duda his concerns over certain actions and the impasse around the Poland’s Constitutional Tribunal.
„I insisted that we are very respectful of Poland’s sovereignty, and I recognize that Parliament is working on legislation to take some important steps, but more work needs to be done,” he stressed.
President Obama held the press conference at the end of NATO Summit in Warsaw. It was his third visit in Poland. “I want to thank the government and the people of Poland for hosting this NATO Summit. And I especially want to thank the people of Warsaw for their wonderful hospitality. It is my third visit to Poland. Each time, we have been received with tremendous friendship, and it signifies the close bonds between our two countries”.
President Obama spent a lot of time responding to issues related to safety on American streets, recent shooting in Dallas, Texas and in other places.
He affirmed commitment to European Union “In good times and in bad, Europe can count on the United States – always”.
The 2017 NATO Summit will be organized in the new NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium.
NATO Warsaw Summit. Author, Andrew Mikolajczyk with journalist Maciej Wierzynski.
I had brief opportunity to talk with Presidents Barack Obama and Andrzej Duda at the conclusion of NATO Summit in Warsaw.
White House Fact Sheet on NATO Warsaw Summit
Press Conference by President Obama after NATO Summit
Prepared for Polish News by Andrew (Andrzej) Mikolajczyk.