2008 Bucharest summit

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Bucharest summit
2008 Bucharest Summit logo.jpg
Bucharest summit logo
Host countryRomania
Dates2–4 April 2008
Venue(s) Palace of the Parliament, Bucharest

The 2008 Bucharest Summit or the 20th NATO Summit was a NATO summit organized in the Palace of the Parliament, Bucharest, Romania on 2 – 4 April 2008. [1] [2]


Among other business, Croatia and Albania were invited to join the Alliance. The Republic of Macedonia (now North Macedonia) was not invited to join NATO due to its ongoing naming dispute with Greece. Georgia and Ukraine had hoped to join the NATO Membership Action Plan, [3] but, while welcoming the two countries’ aspirations for membership and agreeing that "these countries will become members of NATO", the NATO members decided to review their request in December 2008. [4] [5]

Prior protests in Brussels

Protests against NATO's role in "promoting war" were held at NATO's HQ in Brussels two weeks before the summit, [6] and in Bucharest. [7] Protesters targeted the renewed determination of NATO to use nuclear weapons [8] [9] and NATO's backing of the US anti-missile shield. [10]

Summit agenda

The summit 2008 Bucharest summit (5).JPG
The summit

As said by Craig Kennedy in an introduction to the NATO Bucharest summit [11] and from the NATO summit program. [12]


Romania competed for the organization of this summit with Portugal, which initially was scheduled to host the summit in 2006, but eventually conceded in favor of Latvia, which held the 2006 Riga Summit. [2] Romania received support from the United States, and U.S. Under Secretary of State R. Nicholas Burns said in December 2006 that Romania deserved the honor to hold this event due to its contribution to the Alliance's common effort in the War in Afghanistan and for stability in the Iraq War. Romania has been a member of NATO since 14 March 2004.


An invitation to join the Alliance was not extended to the Republic of Macedonia (now North Macedonia). Greece had threatened on several occasions to veto the country's NATO bid due to the longstanding naming dispute over the latter's name. [13] The last UN proposal before the summit was the name "Republic of Macedonia (Skopje)", which was rejected by Greece. [14] Athens argues that use of the name "Macedonia" implies territorial claims on its own region of Macedonia. [10] Macedonia denied it, [15] citing constitutional amendments that specifically exclude "territorial pretensions". [16] [17] NATO officials said the country could begin talks on joining the alliance as soon as it had resolved its dispute with Greece. [18]

While under the terms of the Interim Accord, signed between the two parties in 1995, Greece agreed not to block "membership in international, multilateral and regional organizations and institutions" under the acronym "FYROM", [19] Greece expected that the country would immediately request recognition by its constitutional name once it gained entry into the organization. [20] According to politicians in Macedonia, Greece had directly breached the Interim Accord. [21]

The governments that supported its membership bid argued that the country had completed the necessary reforms for membership and that regional stability would be challenged if it did not join NATO. [22] [23] Conversely, Greece contended that although Macedonia rejected territorial claims officially, in practice there have been numerous irredentist provocations by high government officials, schoolbooks, and other governmental publications. [24] [25] Senior officials in Macedonia asserted that the country had fulfilled NATO requirements to join and was being "punished" for its identity. [26]

After an application for ruling submitted after the Summit by Macedonia under the "FYROM" reference against Greece on this matter before the International Court of Justice, on 5 December 2011 the Court ruled that Greece had indeed breached the accords and was wrong to do so. [27]

Russian presence

Romanian President Traian Basescu and Russian President Vladimir Putin, before NATO summit, in Bucharest, on 4 April 2008. Vladimir Putin 4 April 2008-10.jpg
Romanian President Traian Băsescu and Russian President Vladimir Putin, before NATO summit, in Bucharest, on 4 April 2008.

[ further explanation needed ]

Russian President Vladimir Putin was invited to the summit, and he arrived on the second day (3 April) to participate in bilateral NATO–Russia talks. He opposed the US plans to deploy missile defenses in Poland and the Czech Republic, which was discussed at the summit. Russia also opposed Georgia and Ukraine's NATO membership bids. [28]


Summary of 2 April

Summary of 3 April

Summary of 4 April

After the summit

Member states leaders and other dignitaries in attendance

Non-member states and organisations

Related Research Articles

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