Stoltenberg likely to be asked to remain as NATO chief for another year

Washington, DC, June 17 (BNA): Jens Stoltenberg is expected to be asked to stay on as NATO’s secretary general for another year, according to a source familiar with the discussions and a US official, after the alliance struggled to decide on a replacement. Mid-July summit in Lithuania.

The source, who asked not to be named, told Reuters that the Norwegian Stoltenberg, who spent nine years in the post and is due to step down at the end of September, enjoys wide support among NATO and remains an effective leader.

“The (Biden) administration has been floating around the idea of ​​Stoltenberg sticking around for another year,” said the US official, who also spoke on condition of anonymity.

He added, “There does not seem to be a consensus now within the alliance on its alternative.”

The chances of Stoltenberg asking for a fourth extension of his term increased as the summit in Vilnius approaches, where allies fear a show of disunity.

British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace announced last week that he would like the position. But while some governments are pushing for the first female secretary-general of NATO, Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen is also emerging as a serious contender.

Frederiksen met US President Joe Biden in Washington earlier this month before Stoltenberg visited the White House this week for talks with Biden.

The source said US officials believe there are a bunch of different candidates and that Biden has all of them in mind, including the prime minister of Denmark.

The source added that Biden believes Stoltenberg has done a tremendous job during a difficult time, a view held by many other allies.

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