Colombia’s Defense Minister met with the director of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Tuesday to begin the implementation of a security agreement signed last year.
Held in the Colombian capital of Bogota, the meeting between Defense Minister Juan Carlos Pinzon and NATO Director Stephen Smith “gave start to a process of certification of procedures and measures of security information,” said a Defense Ministry statement released late Tuesday.
The 2013 deal “will allow the exchange of classified information between the [NATO] Alliance and Colombia” and serve as a “precursor to any possible future cooperation with Colombia which [NATO’s 28] member states will develop through the organization,” anonymous NATO sources in Brussels told Spanish news agency EFE last June.
During Smith’s visit to Colombia, the NATO director also met with the commander general of the Armed Forces, the vice minister of defense for politics and international themes, and the heads of Armed Forces Intelligence, according to the Defense Ministry’s press release.
Designated as a NATO “Global Partner,” Colombia is the first and only Latin America country at this time to cooperate with NATO.