Alongside the tense situation in Europe, NATO now faces the task of finding a successor to Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who is set to leave his post to head Norway’s Central Bank, the Norwegian Finance Ministry announced in Oslo on Friday.
Stoltenberg has been NATO secretary general since 2014 and his current term is set to expire in September. He previously served as Norwegian prime minister from 2005 to 2013.
Stoltenberg‘s candidacy for the post at the central bank was controversial in Norway, partly due to his close friendship with current Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støhre, a fellow social democrat. Ida Wolden Bache, the current deputy head of the central bank, had also been discussed as a candidate. Wolden Bache is to take over temporarily in March until Stoltenberg takes office, probably at the beginning of December.