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Southeastern European Defense Ministers Discuss Regional Issues

The South-East Europe Defense Ministerial (SEDM) Process, organized to bolster regional security, stability and cooperation, convened in the Turkish capital, Ankara, on Wednesday to discuss regional issues and admit a new member.

“As SEDM members, we have reiterated our strong commitment to Ukraine’s internationally recognized territorial integrity,” National Defense Minister Yaşar Güler told reporters alongside his Romanian counterpart Angel Tivar.

The three-day summit convened top defense officials of 16 Southeastern European nations, including the defense ministers of Georgia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania and Türkiye; deputy ministers of Bulgaria, North Macedonia and Serbia; the charge d’affaires of the United States and military attache of Ukraine.

Representatives from three regional institutions and the South-Eastern Europe Brigade (SEEBRIG) were also in attendance.

“We exchanged views on the future of the SEDM Process, regional issues and the activities of SEEBRIG,” Güler said.

“We have also approved the full membership of Moldova in SEDM.”

Hailing SEDM as “the most comprehensive initiative” in the region, Güler said the organization would continue its expansion, “which is a clear demonstration of SEDM as a peace project.”

“Members have agreed to maintain our efforts to increase the organization’s regional role and effect, as well as result-based visibility in Southeast Europe and beyond,” Güler concluded.

The SEDM has a rotational chairmanship, which Romania took over from Bulgaria earlier in July.

The organization was founded in 1996 on the “necessity of a consistent regional cooperation mechanism” in the face of tumultuous experiences in Southeast Europe, according to its objective statement.

Members seek to promote regional politico-military cooperation and good neighborly relations, strengthen regional defense capabilities and establish links facilitating integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions.

SEEBRIG, the organization’s military arm, aims to enhance interoperability and capability to deploy in peace support missions.

Source : Daily Sabah