Montenegro could join NATO by spring 2017

In spite of strong resistance from Russia, Montenegro is on its way of establishing closer ties with NATO. “The country can become a NATO member by spring 2017,”  stated the NATO Deputy Secretary General, Rose Gottemoeller.

Montenegro will become a NATO member after all 28 NATO member countries ratify the agreement in their parliaments, said Gottemoeller, adding that the process is moving along very smoothly.

Previously, the Prime Minister of Montenegro, Milo Đukanović, accused Russia of financing the campaign against the country's accession to NATO. Đukanović believes that Moscow is funding the opposition, the Democratic Front, from several pro-Russian and pro-Serbian parties, that are apposing Montenegro’s NATO and EU membership.

In May, NATO counties signed an agreement on Montenegro's membership in the Alliance. The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs called the negotiations on Montenegro’s membership in NATO a confrontational step, which may cause Moscow to take a “reciprocal measures”.

Đukanović also said that Russia “is actively working in promoting the anti-EU and anti-NATO sentiment in the Western Balkans. This is with the purpose of preventing the country from joining NATO.” He also believes that Russia is “supporting the country’s anti-Western political minority.”

  Montenegro, NATO, Russia