CANADIAN DEFENSE MINISTER FAVORS NATO ENLARGEMENT

Politics | September 12, 2001, Wednesday // 00:00

`Bulgaria is a strong candidate for membership in NATO`, Canadian Defense Minister Arthur Eggleton said, after a meeting with his Bulgarian counterpart Nikolay Svinarov. He added that his country favors the idea for broader enlargement of the Alliance. Canada still does not have a clear position on the applicants that it will support at the NATO Summit in Prague in 2001. The situation in Macedonia and the cooperation between Bulgaria and Canada in defense and security were the most important issues that were discussed at the meeting. Sixty-eight Bulgarian officers will be trained in Canada to participate in peacekeeping operations, and will also receive language training. Eggleton is on a two-day official visit to Sofia at the invitation of the Bulgarian Defense Minister. This is the first visit here of a Canadian Defense Minister. Eggleton described the terrorist acts in New York and Washington DC, as shocking and catastrophic. `I am in absolute shock,` he said. The Canadian defense minister read a public lecture at the invitation of the Atlantic Club, which started with a moment of silence after the terrorist attacks in the United States.

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