NATO unveils draft of new mission statement

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Associated Press

Posted on May 17, 2010 at 10:31 AM

BRUSSELS (AP) — NATO has released a draft of a new mission statement.

In addition to assuring the security of the alliance's 28 member countries, the proposed mission would commit NATO to winning the war in Afghanistan, expanding ties with Russia and even China, and countering the threat posed by Iran's missiles. It also warns against deep cuts in defense spending, which many European members are considering in response to the economic crisis.

The draft represents an effort to bridge a rift between the U.S. and Europe. Washington has been pushing NATO toward a greater international role, while European nations have argued that NATO should stick to its traditional defensive focus.

NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen (AHN'-derz fohg RAHS'-moo-sihn) says Afghanistan presents an example of how NATO must go beyond its border to defend those borders.

Fogh Rasmussen will use the draft as a basis for a new strategic concept he'll submit at the alliance's next summit in November.

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<<CUT …189 (05/17/10)>> 00:30 "''

Bryant Thomas

NATO's mission statment is becoming broader. AP Correspondent Bryant Thomas explains.

<<CUT …190 (05/17/10)>> 00:14 "previous defensive goal"

Bryant Thomas

AP Correspondent Bryant Thomas reports NATO's new mission will include some obvious additions.

<<CUT …191 (05/17/10)>> 00:13 "summit in November"

Bryant Thomas

AP Correspondent Bryant Thomas reports the final version of NATO mission statement will be approved at the alliance's summit later this year.

<<APPHOTO YL101 (05/17/10)>>

: NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, right, listens to former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright at NATO headquarter in Brussels, Monday, May 17, 2010. NATO must win the war in Afghanistan, expand ties with Russia, counter the threat posed by Iran's missiles, and assure the security of its 28 members, according to its new mission statement for the next decade.The draft document, released Monday, seeks to bridge a growing rift between the U.S., which favors a greater international role for NATO, and European nations that want it to retain its traditional defensive focus.

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