Ministry of Defence

Defence Minister Kodheli attends South-Eastern Europe Defence Ministerial (SEDM)

Defence Minister Mimi Kodheli: The open-door policy, so much promoted by us, loses its meaning if it is not based on the comprehensive principle.

03 October 2013

b_210_140_16777215_00___.._images_galeria_2013_Tetor_03a_00.jpgOn the second day of the Comprehensive Regional Ministerial 2013 held in Brdo, Slovenia, the Minister of Defence, Ms. Mimi Kodheli took part in the meeting of the defence ministers of the South-Eastern Europe countries (SEDM).
Initiated in 1996 in Tirana, SEDM continues to promote political and military cooperation, relations of good neighbourhood, as well as strengthening of defence capabilities in the region and beyond. An important place in this initiative is occupied by the South-Eastern Europe Multinational Peace Force (SEEBRIG).

Defence Minister, Ms. Mimi Kodheli, in the speech delivered at the ministerial, noted that, the 17-year process of SEDM has been very successful and has influenced in favour of peace, stability, security and democracy in the region. Today, after many years since the establishment, emphasized among other things Ms. Kodheli, there is a diversity of membership in this initiative, many countries are members of the European Union and NATO, and other countries are moving fast to become part of such organizations taking example from the experience of countries already integrated.

Minister Kodheli further noted that, since the creation of SEDM and SEEBRIG many things have changed, the security and defence environment is constantly changing and therefore the need to face new challenges arises. Our organization should redefine the strategic priorities to face and manage the situations the new reality offers us. Given the foregoing, Defence Minister Kodheli praised the work being done to develop SEDM’s Strategic Review Document and stressed that, SEDM’s role can grow, creating more space for political dialogue on security issues and problems related with our region. In front of the challenges the region and our partners are facing, the new “Smart Defence” concept presents a busy agenda for all of us. Albania has supported and will continue to support each SEDM project, including also new projects, which contribute to the stability in the region and beyond, highlighted Ms. Kodheli. In this context, Ms. Kodheli expressed Albania’s support for the development of the “interoperability and deployability” of SEEBRIG, in order to enhance its ability in favour of regional peace and security, but also for the benefit of NATO international military missions.

During her speech, Defence Minister Kodheli also highlighted one of the main issues of SEDM, the expansion of this initiative to new members. More specifically, Ms. Kodheli stated that the open-door policy is considered as one of the major principles of the development of the region, and for this reason Albania remains deeply committed to supporting this policy for any country that recognizes the principles and seeks to contribute in the framework of this initiative. In this context, stressed Minister Kodheli, regional cooperation would not be complete without the participation of all the countries of the region, otherwise the open-door policy, we promote so much, would lose its context.

Ms. Kodheli noted that, taking into account the agreement reached between Kosovo and Serbia, in April, both sides have made the commitment to work together towards a better future in European Union. I invite all the member countries of this initiative to be oriented toward the future with regard to the implementation of open-door policy.

At the end of her speech, Minister Kodheli, on behalf of the government and institution she leads, assured the forum that, Albania will be committed to defend the security of South-Eastern Europe and its future.

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