Argentina Requests To Join NATO, Milei Seeks To Boost Ties With West

General view of the Prague NATO Summit. (Photo by GERARD CERLES/AFP via Getty Images)

OAN’s Brooke Mallory
5:22 PM – Friday, April 19, 2024

On Thursday, Argentina formally sought to become a partner of NATO, paving the stage for increased political and security cooperation at a time when President Javier Milei’s administration seeks to strengthen ties with Western nations and draw in investments.


The proposal was made as visiting Argentine Defense Minister Luis Petri and NATO Deputy General Secretary Mircea Geoana discussed regional security issues in Brussels.

Geoana expressed his approval of Argentina’s application to join NATO as an approved partner.

According to the Argentinian president, Argentina could soon have access to cutting-edge technology, security measures, and training that it was not previously able to obtain.

“Argentina plays an important role in Latin America,” Geoana said at the NATO HQ. “Closer political and practical cooperation could benefit us both.”

Reversing years of trade protectionist policies, excessive spending, and debilitating foreign debt that have sent the nation’s economy into a spiral, is the goal of Milei’s Libertarian presidency.

He has changed Argentina’s foreign policy during his last four months in office to almost entirely support the United States. This is an attempt to bring Argentina back to prominence in the world economy after previous administrations allowed ties with Washington and European allies to deteriorate.

Milei’s government is also hoping that improved relations with the West will enhance the nation’s security.

For the first time in more than 20 years, the U.S. government revealed on Thursday that it would be giving Argentina $40 million in foreign military financing.

The money, which is meant to support Argentina’s military modernization and equipment acquisition, will help pay for the 24 American F-16 fighter planes that Argentina purchased from Denmark earlier this week. The purchase of the cutting-edge warplanes was praised by Defense Minister Petri as “the most important military purchase since Argentina’s return to democracy” in 1983.

Meanwhile, Milei’s political rivals have criticized the $300 million price tag.

The agreement of all 32 NATO countries is necessary for a formal partnership. Argentina and Britain, a crucial NATO member, have had tense relations ever since their 1982 conflict over the disputed Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic.

Afghanistan, Australia, Iraq, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mongolia, New Zealand, and Pakistan are among the alliance’s other international partners. Colombia is the only NATO ally in Latin America at the moment.

However, a nation’s NATO allies may not defend it from an attack just because it has been granted the title of “global partner.” Article 5 of the founding treaty of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization lays forth this commitment, which is exclusive to alliance members.

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