Although, the country has not become a full member of NATO yet.
The protocol of accession of Montenegro to the North Atlantic Alliance has bee signed at NATO headquarters in Brussels. Now the country will be able to participate in all NATO meetings as an observer. Once all NATO countries ratify the Protocol, Montenegro will become the 29th member of the alliance. It is still unknown when exactly this will happen.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that accession of Montenegro to NATO will bring many benefits to this country, and will become a new stage in its history.
“NATO membership will ensure long-term stability, sovereignty and security of Montenegro. This will allow Montenegro to sit at the table of NATO, and form the organization’s policy,” he said at the signing ceremony.
In 2009, Albania and Croatia became NATO members. It was reported that 3 more countries seek to become members of the Alliance: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia and Macedonia.
NATO members agreed to begin negotiations on accession of Montenegro to the Alliance in December 2015. At that time Moscow declared that it would lead to retaliatory actions of the Russian side.
“On various levels, Moscow always noted that the continuing expansion of NATO, and NATO’s military infrastructure to the East, certainly, inevitably leads to retaliatory action from the East (meaning from the Russian side) for maintaining security and the parity of interests,” the press Secretary of the President of Russia Dmitry Peskov stated.