NEWPORT, Wales—In an all-encompassing declaration adopted Friday at a NATO summit in Wales, the North Atlantic Council, NATO’s principle decision-making body, made references to conflicts in the South Caucasus and Eastern Europe. The declaration, keeping in line with NATO verbiage since 2006, referred to territorial integrity while neglecting to mention the right to self-determination.
“Russia’s illegitimate occupation of Crimea and military intervention in eastern Ukraine have raised legitimate concerns among several of NATO’s other partners in Eastern Europe,” the Wales Summit Declaration reads.
“Allies will continue to support the right of partners to make independent and sovereign choices on foreign and security policy, free from external pressure and coercion. Allies also remain committed in their support to the territorial integrity, independence, and sovereignty of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and the Republic of Moldova.”
“In this context, we will continue to support efforts towards a peaceful settlement of the conflicts in the south Caucasus, as well as in the Republic of Moldova, based upon these principles and the norms of international law, the UN Charter, and the Helsinki Final Act. The persistence of these protracted conflicts continues to be a matter of particular concern, undermining the opportunities for citizens in the region to reach their full potential as members of the Euro-Atlantic community. We urge all parties to engage constructively and with reinforced political will in peaceful conflict resolution, within the established negotiation frameworks,” the declaration says.