On March 11, 2015, the Atlantic Council hosted Montenegro’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration Igor Lukšić for a strategy session on the future of NATO enlargement and security dynamics in the Balkan region.

Montenegro has been a serious candidate for NATO membership since first joining the Alliance’s Partnership for Peace framework in 2006, implementing important military and structural reforms and making serious political and military contributions to NATO. The 2014 NATO Summit in Wales was crucial for enhancing and focusing ongoing accession talks with Montenegro, and for the first time set a concrete deadline of the end of 2015 to assess whether to extend a membership invitation to Montenegro. Deputy Prime Minister Lukšić will come to the Atlantic Council to discuss security dynamics in the Western Balkans impacting Euro-Atlantic integration, prospects for further NATO enlargement as the Alliance prepares for the 2016 NATO Summit in Warsaw, and his country’s progress on forging closer ties with NATO.

Igor Lukšić was elected a member of parliament at the Parliament of Serbia and Montenegro, and then the Parliament of Montenegro from 2003 to 2006 six times (in 2001, 2002, 2006, 2008, 2009 and 2012). From 2010 through 2012, he served as Prime Minister of Montenegro. During his two-year term of office, Montenegro opened the EU accession negotiations, expanded and deepened relations with NATO, and became a member of the World Trade Organization. In December 2012, he was elected Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration.