Bulgaria urges NATO, EU to strengthen cooperation in Western Balkans

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Bulgarian Chief of Defense Lieutenant General Andrey Botsev here on Thursday urged NATO and the European Union (EU) to strengthen their cooperation in the region of the Western Balkans.

The deepening of the cooperation between the EU and NATO was one of his country’s priorities, Botsev said after meeting with visiting Chairman of the EU Military Committee General Mikhail Kostarakos.

Botsev in particular wanted to emphasize the specific focus of the interaction between the two organizations in the Western Balkans region.

NATO and the EU should use every opportunity to deliver coordinated strategic messages and carry out concerted action to build capacity and sustainability in the region, Botsev said.

Considering the importance of the common European future, Bulgaria reaffirmed its willingness and readiness to continue to work for the positive development of security and defense processes in the region, Botsev said.

Kostarakos said in turn that Bulgaria has a vital role to play during its Presidency of the Council of the EU.

He said he had no doubt that Bulgaria would succeed in its endeavour, and on behalf of the EU Military Committee declared full assistance and support.

Bulgaria has been a NATO and EU member since 2004 and 2007 respectively.