NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy, Ambassador Tacan Ildem, is today on a two-day visit to the Republic of Macedonia, where he met with the Minister of Defence, Radmila Shekerinska, and also visited the only NATO-certified centre in the Republic of Macedonia, the Public Affairs Regional Centre.
On the meeting, Minister Shekerinska noted that NATO membership represents a strategic commitment of the Republic of Macedonia, which has high support from the citizens of Macedonia. “Macedonia’s membership in NATO will be an additional impetus for the security and stability of the region”, Shekerinska said and stressed that Macedonia is focused on implementing reforms in accordance with the guidelines of the Warsaw Summit of the alliance, which imply progress in the rule of law, freedom of the media, improving human rights and professional institutions.
Shekerinska added that the Government of the Republic of Macedonia has already shown that the policy of good neighbourly relations is one of the main priorities. The Minister pointed out that the Government is ready to solve the issues that are open, and not just to enumerate and use them as excuses.
Assistant Secretary General Ildem strongly encouraged the efforts of the new reform Government to implement the reforms needed for Macedonia’s membership in the European Union and NATO. He stressed that concrete results are expected in line with NATO recommendations from the Warsaw Summit and expressed support for the Government’s reform capacity.
During the visit of the Public Affairs Regional Centre, accompanied by the Deputy Minister of Defence, Bekim Maksuti, Assistant Secretary General Ildem was introduced to the structure and types of trainings conducted at the Centre, as the only NATO Partnership Centre for Education and Training in our country.
Deputy Minister of Defence Maksuti stressed that since the founding of the Public Affairs Regional Centre in 2005, it has greatly contributed to the development of public relations capacities in the countries of Southeast Europe.
“With the offer of this significant capacity to all NATO member states and partners, we are sending a strong signal that Macedonia is ready to help and give support to NATO, not only in international peacekeeping missions and operations, but also in areas such as public affairs”, concluded Maksuti.
Apart from being the only NATO Partnership Centre in Macedonia, the Public Affairs Regional Centre is the only Centre of its kind from the existing 31 Partnership Centres for Education and Training in the world, which is specialized exclusively for carrying out public relations training.