Today, from the “Kuzman Josifovski – Pitu” Barracks in Tetovo, the first Macedonian contingent with 44 Army members left for Kosovo, where in the next six months, they will work as staff officers in the KFOR HQ in Prishtina and provide force protection to KFOR RC West.
By participating in the KFOR mission in Kosovo, North Macedonia is taking its place in NATO, as a country that signifies peace, security and stability in the Balkans.
At the ceremony on the occasion of sending this first contingent to Kosovo, which took place recently, Minister Shekerinska said: “We have shown our qualities in many distant places. From now on we will show our true place in the region. NATO membership means security and stability for us, it means security under the collective umbrella of the Alliance, but, at the same time, we consider this membership to be a great responsibility. Less than 20 years ago, our homeland took the opportunity to welcome a NATO mission to provide security and stability. Today, as a NATO member station we can help our neighbours to take this opportunity themselves. That shows how far along we have come together, what challenges we have overcome and how much we have matured as people and as a country.”
The contribution of the Army members in the KFOR mission in Kosovo will continue to grow during 2021 – already in the next rotation, the plan is to increase the number of members to KFOR for over 60, and from next summer, together with our long-time partner the Vermont National Guard from the USA, outside of the established rotations, for a period of 9 months, our contribution will increase with over 100 Army members. A total of about 180 soldiers, non-commissioned officers and officers of the Army of North Macedonia will be a part of the KFOR mission next summer.