NSD-S hosted the NATO Defense College’s Middle East Faculty

On November 9, 2017, the NATO Strategic Direction South Hub hosted a visit from the NATO Defense College’s Middle East Faculty from Rome
Nov 21, 2017

Fifty-seven participants in the annual NATO Regional Cooperation Course 2018 (NRCC 18) visited the Allied Joint Force Command Naples Headquarters and the NSD-S Hub location. The NRCC is the Alliance’s major educational outreach to our Mediterranean Dialogue and Istanbul Cooperation Initiative (Gulf) partners and other countries from the region. Participants are senior professionals from their countries: officers of the rank of Brigadier General, Colonel and Lieutenant Colonel and civilian officials and diplomats of equivalent rank from relevant ministries dealing with strategic security issues.


The participants were welcomed by JFC Naples Chief of Staff, Italian Army Lieutenant General Luciano Portolano, and the Hub Director, Italian Army Brigadier General Roberto Angius. The Chief of Staff addressed the guests with a brief on the operational level Headquarters’ structure, work flow and management of its current operations.

During the two day visit, participants attended a series of comprehensive briefings including a broad introduction by the Hub Deputy Director, French Air Force Colonel Eric Asselin on the recently opened NATO entity. Colonel Asselin underlined the Hub’s main focus to connect with all actors across the wide spectrum of interest to establish a mutual information exchange in order to promote interoperability and to contribute to the regional development and collaboration within different fields of expertise as such as mass migration, terrorism, intelligence sharing, training and education.


JFC Naples Political Advisor, Dr. Mel McNulty, then chaired a panel discussion on "Challenges from the South and NATO’s Response”. Three panellists from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Kuwait presented their view on their countries’ security challenges. They emphasised the common threats that they and the wider international community share are terrorism, and the destabilizing effect of failed states. They underlined that these challenges require enhanced cooperating among states to improve border security, safeguard energy resources, and reduce smuggling (human, weapons, drugs) which finances terrorism. Lively discussion allowed NATO colleagues to hear directly our partners’ perspective on the current level of partnership cooperation with NATO, and their expectations for what more NATO, with other international partner organizations, could do. Many considered that the Alliance could offer a platform to share experience and best practice in addressing shared challenges.


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