Argentina formally requests NATO partnership

Flag of Argentina
Flag of Argentina

Buenos Aires has taken the first official step toward a global partnership with NATO, the British newspaper Express reported on April 18, following a meeting between Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoană and Argentine Defense Minister Luis Petri.

“Argentina plays an important role in Latin America, and I welcome today’s request to explore becoming a NATO partner,” Geoană said.

“NATO works with a range of countries around the world to promote peace and stability. Closer political and practical cooperation could benefit us both.”

NATO’s political dialogue with Argentina began in the early 1990s. Buenos Aires later contributed to the Alliance’s peace-support operations in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and in Kosovo. Colombia is currently NATO’s only partner country in Latin America.

Any decision on a formal partnership would require the consensus of all 32 Allies.

The Alliance's current global partners include Australia, Colombia, Iraq, Japan, Mongolia, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Korea, and Afghanistan, while Ukraine participates in the Partnership for Peace program.

Last December, Argentina inaugurated a new president, Javier Milea, who was elected on Nov. 19 on a far-right libertarian platform. Milea has proposed radical measures, such as burning down the Central Bank to combat the "cancer of inflation" and adopting the US dollar as the currency. He has also emphasized the need to liberalize and deregulate the economy, although he acknowledged that it will not be easy for the Argentine people until the situation improves.

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