Russia can't veto Montenegrin membership - NATO chief

PODGORICA -- NATO "will not accept Russia's veto on Montenegro's membership in the alliance," Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has been quoted as saying.

Stoltenberg is seen in Rome (Beta/AP)
Stoltenberg is seen in Rome (Beta/AP)

"Russia cannot deprive Montenegro of its right to become a member of NATO," he told the Italian Senat's Committee on Defense.

"Some allies can present their arguments against the alliance's enlargement, but Russia is a third country and has no possibility to intervene in the debates," Stoltenberg was quoted as saying by the Italian agency Nova.

He also stated that NATO would make its decision on Montenegro's membership bid "later," but that Moscow "certainly" will not veto it, the Montenegrin website Analitika reported.