Nato: Frederiksen as Stoltenberg’s successor?
Nato Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg is slated to leave his post at the end of September. A successor is expected to be chosen at a Nato summit in July and many member states would like to see a woman in the post this time. Denmark’s Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has been invited to meet US President Joe Biden today, Monday. Commentators put two and two together.
Taking the White House test
La Stampa has little doubt that Frederiksen’s US visit is related to the issue of succession:
“She will have a conversation with President Biden that promises to be more than just an exchange on the state of bilateral relations between the US and Denmark and engagement with Ukraine. It seems rather, as some Western diplomats explain, to be a kind of ‘test’ that the White House wants to conduct with Frederiksen with a view to her being appointed as Nato Secretary-General ... The White House is not officially commenting on the rumours, but National Security Council sources have stated that a name will no doubt be found in Vilnius’.”
Another Scandinavian unlikely
Jydske Vestkysten doubts that Frederiksen will get the post:
“Political logic speaks against Mette Frederiksen. Three Scandinavians in a row — and two of them Danish, first Anders Fogh Rasmussen and then Mette Frederiksen — is likely to be unacceptable to several Alliance members when it comes to finding a successor for Norway’s Jens Stoltenberg. Nevertheless, it says a lot not only about Mette Frederiksen but even more so about Denmark’s clout in terms of security policy when our country’s prime minister is mentioned as a leading contender for the post of Nato’s political boss.”