The NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (CCDCOE) raised the flags of Canada, the Republic of Korea and Luxembourg in a ceremony in front of its complex in Tallinn on Thursday, welcoming the newest members of the center's multinational family into the fold.
"It is a great honor to have Canada, the Republic of Korea and Luxembourg in our growing and diverse family of like-minded nations," Col. Jaak Tarien, director of the CCDCOE, said according to a press release.
"Each member of the CCDCOE plays an important role in building and advancing strong and efficient unity against cyber threats," Tarien continued. "In the long run, the conditions for peace in the cyber realm and a response to the security threats of the modern world cannot be created without united and committed support."
The three newest official members of the center have already collaborated extensively with the CCDCOE, and have been members of the community for some time, the center noted.
The National Intelligence Service of the Republic of Korea noted that Thursday's event served as a venue to raise awareness of the importance of strengthening global partnerships, and provided opportune momentum for integrating the commitment to building a safer and more stable cyberspace against various threats and attacks.
"Canada's commitment to NATO is absolute," said Kevin Rex, Canadian ambassador to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. "Our presence in the Baltics is our largest anywhere in the world. We are over 1,400 boots on the ground in the Baltics, anchored in our leadership of NATO's enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) battlegroup in Latvia. Today, we are pleased to formally join the CCDCOE and contribute to strengthening allied capacity to respond to evolving threats to our democracies taking place in the cyber realm, including as part of Russia's unprovoked aggression against Ukraine."
"Cooperation, and the sharing of information, skills and best practices are essential for tackling the challenges we face in cyberspace," Max Gerten, deputy head of mission at the Embassy of Luxembourg in the Czech Republic, Estonia and Ukraine. "Luxembourg is convinced that the expertise of the CCDCOE will strengthen its cyberdefense efforts, and we are committed to contributing our own experience."
Nearly 30 flags fly at Tallinn center
Established in May 2008 on the initiative of Estonia together with Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Slovak Republic and Spain, the NATO CCDCOE is a multinational and interdisciplinary cyberdefense hub based in Tallinn, whose mission is to support its member nations as well as NATO with interdisciplinary expertise in cyberdefense research, training and exercises covering the focus areas of technology, strategy, operations and law.
The CCDCOE was awarded full accreditation and International Military Organization status five months after its founding in 2008, and is one of the largest NATO-accredited centers to support its member nations and the alliance.
In early March, the 27 sponsoring countries of the CCDCOE voted unanimously to accept Ukraine into the organization as a contributing participant. In a gesture of solidarity as well as to mark the country's road to membership of the center, the Ukrainian flag was raised in front of the CCDCOE complex in a ceremony on April 14.
It currently has nearly 30 members, including NATO allies and partner countries.
Editor: Aili Vahtla