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 Feb 2 2017

With Commitment and Pride

Lieutenant General Manfred Hofmann, the Commander Multinational Corps Northeast, summarized the achievements of 2016 and looked ahead to 2017 during an annual New Year's Reception held in the Baltic Barracks on 31st of January. The event was attended by a number of military and civilian officials.

It has been another year of progress for the Headquarters Multinational Corps Northeast. While the Corps is already looking ahead to the new tasks, General Hofmann presented a brief summary of some of the biggest achievements of 2016.
"We assumed the responsibility for NATO's Eastern flank. – the Commander declared plainly and firmly in his opening address – We all have worked very hard to achieve that. We, NATO's Regional Custodians of security, are carrying this obligation with commitment and pride."

Although the path has not always been either smooth or easily attainable, the decisions coming out of the Wales and Warsaw Summits were put into action very promptly and efficiently.

With that, the Commander shared his outlook for the future and laid the foundation for further development. Remaining optimistic yet grounded, he left no doubt that the year 2017 will be a busy one. This refers in particular to the exercise "Saber Strike 2017", a final confirmation of the Corps' capability to serve as a High Readiness Force Headquarters.

"In NATO there are no less important members or regions as some portray it. In the Alliance, we are united in the efforts to keep people safe and secure." - said General Hofmann
As stated by General Hofmann, the year 2017 will be a show of solidarity of all NATO members.

We will prove that we are fully ready to stand guard and watch over NATO's North-eastern region 365 days a year.

 - emphasized General Hofmann

In 2016 alone, the Corps underwent a series of demanding exercises and proved its capability to take command of the Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF) if deployed in North-eastern Europe. At the same time, the two new NATO Force Integration Units – Hungary and Slovakia – were placed under the Corps' control. Also, another four states have joined the Corps, increasing the number of participating nations from 21 to 25.

"It is gratifying that more and more states notice the global importance of North-eastern Europe. – General Hofmann said – It was certainly reinforced through the 2016 NATO Warsaw Summit".

"NATO is real and is delivering." – stressed the Commander. – We must not surrender our values, our freedoms and our friendships. We must demonstrate that our unity is not for sale."

Looking both back and ahead, General Hofmann particularly emphasized that no matter how talented we were as individuals, without cooperation and mutual respect we would be a corps in name only. A team spirit has always been the Corps' strength and core to its mission. Therefore, General Hofmann finished his address on a strong note:
"We are trained to work together, help each other whenever is needed and through that we continue to strengthen the Corps and NATO."
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Story by Multinational Corps Northeast Public Affairs Office

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