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NDC - News-NATO Regional Cooperation Course 31 Graduation Ceremony

NATO Regional Cooperation Course 31 Graduation Ceremony

  • 19 Apr. 2024
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  • Last updated: 19 Apr. 2024 13:41

On 19 April 2024, the NATO Defense College graduated the 31st edition of the NATO Regional Cooperation Course (NRCC). Course Members celebrated the completion of the 10-week curriculum with a graduation ceremony gathering Ambassadors to Italy, various authorities and defence attachés, Course Members’ families and NDC Staff.

Participants in the NATO Regional Cooperation Course 31 graduation ceremony during LGEN Kelsey’s address

The ceremony included special guest Lieutenant General Stephen Kelsey, Deputy Commander of Allied Joint Force Command Naples.

The NDC Commandant, Lieutenant General Max A.L.T. Nielsen, opened the ceremony. He reminded the audience of the objectives of the Course which are, on the one hand, to help Course Members develop strategic thinking and to improve their knowledge of NATO’s security challenges; and on the other hand, to build human interoperability. The Commandant underscored the importance of developing “synergies among officers and civilian officials from Allied and partner countries, from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences, in order to foster in-depth interactions, to share knowledge, and to forge solid relationships.”

NRCC 31 was composed of 28 Course Members representing 18 NATO and partner nations from all of NATO’s Strategic Partnership Frameworks, representing the variety of NATO’s partnership initiatives. The Commandant spoke about the significance of this multicultural environment in fostering a deeper comprehension of the perspectives of both NATO and partner countries when it comes to security and cooperative security issues. The Commandant emphasized the key role played by partners in some of core tasks and concerns of the Alliance: crisis prevention and management, cooperative security and resilience, as well as upholding the rules-based international order.

Just one week after briefing the NRCC 31 at JFC Naples, Lieutenant General Stephen Kelsey, Deputy Commander Allied Joint Force Command Naples, attended the graduation ceremony to deliver the graduation address. He reiterated how the NRCC contributes to cooperative security by strengthening interpersonal bonds across participating nations and by developing interoperability. “In the context of cooperative security, interoperability is about multinationality, working together, coordinating our efforts to common aims. You can only achieve interoperability if there is trust. Trust is the foundation that brings us together. It comes with understanding, from relationships and networks, and it comes from multiple frameworks for cooperation.”

Before the conferment of diplomas to Course Members, NRCC 31 Course President Commodore Slim Zouhaier Ben Chouikha gave his farewell speech, highlighting the key takeaways of the Course: “This experience allowed us to enhance our understanding of important strategic, geopolitical, cultural, defence, and security issues that impact global security and the Alliance. […] Furthermore, Course Members not only gained knowledge, but also strengthened deep bonds rooted in camaraderie, trust, and a shared commitment to cooperation.”

NDC Public Affairs Office
(Prepared by Ms Chloé Ketels, FRA C)