NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg will be in his role for an additional one year to help manage the 30-nation military establishment through the security crisis caused by Russia’s war against Ukraine.
Stoltenberg tweeted on Thursday that he was “honored” by NATO leaders’ decision to extend his term until September 30, 2023.
“As we face the biggest security crisis in a generation, we are united in keeping our alliance strong and our people safe,” he said.
The former Norwegian prime minister was named NATO’s top civilian in October 2014. This is the second time his term has been extended. His term was due to expire in September.
In February, the Norwegian government appointed Stoltenberg as head of the Scandinavian country’s central bank, saying he hoped he could begin his new role by December 1.
In Oslo, Finance Minister Trigve Slagsvold Vedum confirmed that Stoltenberg had resigned. Deputy Governor Ida Oldenbache has been nominated to replace Stoltenberg, and his appointment is expected to be confirmed later Thursday.
“Of course I want to see Jens Stoltenberg as our next central bank governor, but we are in the middle of a dramatic situation in Europe and I understand very well that he prioritizes playing a key role in NATO,” said Slagswold Vedum.
Stoltenberg, 63, described Russia’s war against Ukraine as “the most serious security situation we’ve had in decades.”
Stoltenberg has been praised for leading NATO through a difficult and divisive time under the Trump administration, when US member states threatened not to come to their aid if they were not spending enough on defense.
“They have built a relationship of trust,” Sullivan said. “Secretary-General Stoltenberg has played a key role in helping to secure the strong unity you have seen in NATO through this crisis.”
Stoltenberg was twice Prime Minister of Norway – from 2005 to 2013 and from 2002 to 2014 – and also served as Minister of Finance and Minister of Industry and Energy.
John M. Olsen of Copenhagen contributed to this report.