160414ar16 1 400Under a thick blanket of security, top brass from the world’s allied forces met in Riga, Latvia to discuss ways to adapt to an increasingly complex security environment.

Appropriately labeled Allied Reach, more than 185 of NATO’s key leaders attended this principal meeting April 11-14 to discuss NATO’s readiness, responsiveness, and relevance in the future.

In the wake of the recent terrorist attacks on France and Belgium, this seminar comes at a key time and demonstrated NATO’s commitment to collective defence. It will also ensure NATO is ready for the adaptation that will be necessary and delivered at the next NATO Summit in Warsaw, Poland July 8-9.

“NATO is reacting to the changing security situation by adapting its deterrence and defence posture. NATO remains committed to deterrence because we always prefer to deter rather than to join conflict, but of course, we will be ready if necessary to defend, and that is why we have these seminars” said General Petr Pavel, Chairman of the Military Committee.

Held for the first time outside of Norfolk, Virginia, Allied Reach was an opportunity for NATO leaders to address current challenges and issues related to defence. Some of the main issues discussed were strategic awareness, security networking, strategic communication, and how to bring innovation to capability development.

“This is a team effort for the whole NATO military community, and we had almost all the main military leaders of NATO here this week in Riga. We discussed the future of our Alliance from now to the next 15 years, ensuring we will continue to have a strong, credible military capacity in the Alliance” said General Denis Mercier, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation (SACT).

SACT and Supreme Allied Commander Europe will take findings from Allied Reach to adapt concepts, make improvements to the way NATO conducts business and review innovative insights on how NATO can address future challenges.