NATO Deputy Secretary General Ambassador Alexander Vershbow and the Defence Minister of Colombia, Juan Carlos Pinzon Bueno, on Tuesday ( 25 June 2013) signed an Agreement on the Security of Information, an accord that will allow NATO and Colombia to explore future cooperation and consultation in areas of common interest. “As an Alliance of democracies, we are gratified when countries sharing similar values reach out to us,” the Deputy Secretary General said during his meeting with Minister Pinzon Bueno.
Ambassador Vershbow said that Allies have agreed to pursue tailored cooperation with Colombia on a case-by-case basis, in areas of common interest and that by signing this accord, NATO and Colombia stress their shared interest in consultation and cooperation. The Security of Information Agreement does not formally recognise Colombia as a NATO partner but constitutes a first step for future cooperation in the security field. It will facilitate the participation of Colombia in a number of NATO activities. Colombia has already participated in the 2011 NATO Conference on Building Integrity, which was held in Monterey, California. “Colombia’s expertise in enhancing integrity in the military is precisely the kind of substantive contribution that exemplifies the added value of cooperation,” the NATO Deputy Secretary General said.
The Ambassador added that NATO has a wide range of partners because global challenges require global solutions. “Cooperative security, through the development of partnerships, is one of the Alliance’s key priorities. NATO’s partnerships over the past two decades have been a real success story,” the Deputy Secretary General underlined. He added that the Alliance has a large network of partners engaged with us in a variety of ways.