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New RD Publication - The case for NATO’s global partnership with India

  • 12 Feb. 2020
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  • Last updated: 12 Feb. 2020 13:22

NDC Policy Brief 3-20


India is a country rarely discussed in any of NATO’s operational activities, regional dialogues, or global partnerships. This rarity, however, is likely to change because of shifting political and economic trends, emerging threats from outside NATO’s traditional Euro-Atlantic area, and the necessity to adapt to changing circumstances. Taking account of the emerging multi-polarity in the Asia-Pacific and the US resistance to change, India will become a key country to counter-balance China’s and Russia’s growing influence, to project stability and strengthen security in the Asia-Pacific region in the near future. NATO should take advantage of the opportunity, consider India as a key strategic partner, and include India within NATO’s growing strategic partnership framework as a “Partner Across the Globe”.

NATO has spent most of the past 70 years focusing on how to defend Europe against Russia but with the attacks of 11 September 2001, the Alliance realized that a range of threats originate from regions where it had not been focused. In a globalized world, projecting stability and strengthening security outside NATO territory have therefore become vital elements of the Alliance’s policy, and limiting its role to a Euro-centric military alliance is no longer an option.1 NATO steadily built upon post-Cold War programmes like Partnership for Peace by adding regional partner categories, “The Mediterranean Dialogue”, and “The Istanbul Cooperation Initiative”, and eventually creating a catch-all category, “Partners Across the Globe” for strategically important countries that did not fit neatly into a regional box.2

* (back) Senior associate, the Presidency of the Republic of Turkey, Presidency of Defence Industries (SSB). Abdurrahman Utku Hacιoğlu was a Course member of the NDC’s 134th Senior Course, from February to July 2019. This Policy Brief is a revised version of his end-of-course Individual Paper.
1 (back) S. Huria, “India and the ‘Global NATO’: expectations and reservations”, Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies, 26 January 2009.
2 (back) See N. Chaban et al., “NATO Global Perceptions - Views from the Asia-Pacific Region”, Asian Security 14, No.1, 5 September 2017, pp.1-2.

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