BERLIN – Nato Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg will end his term as planned in October, a spokesman for the military alliance said, after a German newspaper reported a further extension was in the works.
“The mandate of Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has been extended three times, and he has served for a total of almost nine years,” Nato spokesman Oana Lungescu said.
“The Secretary-General’s term comes to an end in October of this year and he has no intention to seek another extension of his mandate.”
Mr Stoltenberg, an economist by training and a former leader of Norway’s Labour Party, had his term extended in 2022.
Welt am Sonntag, citing unidentified diplomatic sources, reported on Sunday his term was to be extended again, as the alliance seeks to maintain stability during the ongoing war in Ukraine.
Members also wanted to extend Mr Stoltenberg’s term until April 2024 because of his “outstanding achievements”, the German newspaper said.
Welt said alliance members want to give Mr Stoltenberg the opportunity to chair the organisation’s 75th-anniversary summit in Washington in April 2024. He would also be in a position to become president of the World Bank when Mr David Malpass steps down at around the same time, it said.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation said it had no intention of seeking another extension of Mr Stoltenberg’s mandate.
Mr Stoltenberg was prime minister of Norway from 2000 to 2001 and 2005 to 2013, before becoming Nato chief in 2014. He has also been Norway’s finance minister and energy minister.
No decision has been made about who will succeed him, but Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and Britain’s Defence Secretary Ben Wallace are among the leading candidates for the post, Welt said. REUTERS