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Appointment of Rutte as NATO Secretary General signals continued support for Ukraine

All 32 NATO member countries approved the appointment of Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte as the alliance’s next Secretary General, set to take office on 1 October, and known for his pro-Ukrainian stance.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg meets with the Prime Minister of the Netherlands and next NATO Secretary General, Mark Rutte.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg meets with the Prime Minister of the Netherlands and next NATO Secretary General, Mark Rutte. Source: NATO
Appointment of Rutte as NATO Secretary General signals continued support for Ukraine

On 26 June, the North Atlantic Council appointed Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte as the next Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Ukraine received military support from the Netherlands under Rutte’s Prime Ministry. In March, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Mark Rutte signed a long-term security pact that provides air defense systems and artillery to Ukraine, reinforcing the Netherlands’ commitment to support Ukraine amid ongoing Russian war. 

He also attended Ukraine’s Peace summit in Switzerland, highlighting continued support for Ukraine.

Previous NATO General Jens Stoltenberg held this position for 10 years and his term expires on 1 October 2024. That’s when Mark Rutte is set to start his tenure, according to a NATO statement.

Stoltenberg congratulated Rutte with a new role and said “I know I am leaving NATO in good hands.”

The appointment of the Secretary General of NATO requires unanimous approval from all 32 member countries of the Alliance.

Hungary, a member of NATO, removed its objections after Mark Rutte assured that Hungary would not be required to contribute personnel or funding to a new support plan for Ukraine. Hungary is known for its pro-Russian stance and opposes any military support to Ukraine in its war against Russia. 

Türkiye also previously opposed Rutte’s nomination but withdrew its opposition in April.

Mark Rutte was the only candidate for this position after Romanian President Klaus Iohannis withdrew from the race.

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