Wetherby MP Alec Shelbrooke will be among the guests at Donald Trump’s inauguration as President of the United States of America later this week.
As UK representative to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, Mr Shelbrooke has been invited to witness the swearing in ceremony of the USA’s 45th President on Friday, ahead of a meeting of NATO’s Defence and Security Committee in Washington DC.
As President Obama leaves the White House to make way for President Trump, the world’s media will be waiting to see what kind of a world leader the businessman and reality TV star will be.
Speaking to the Wetherby News, Mr Shelbrooke said: “In the election campaign the President-Elect made a number of statements that put a question mark over America’s continued support and membership of NATO, with particular focus on Article 5 which outlines that an armed attack against one or more member states in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against all.
“Now more than ever the collective military alliance of NATO forces are likely to play a crucial role in protecting the security of democratic nations in the Euro-Atlantic area.
“I’m confident that the United States will continue to play a leading role in that alliance but the role of the Parliamentary Assembly will be crucial in reaffirming the importance of NATO’s joint defence and security strategy with our allies.”
Since its creation in 1955, the NATO Parliamentary Assembly has provided a unique specialised forum to influence decisions on national security of the NATO member states.
NATO remains the world’s largest inter-governmental military alliance, establishing a system of collective defence whereby its member states agree to mutual defence in response to an attack by any external party.
There are currently 28 member states of NATO, of which the United Kingdom was a founder member.