LYNN SWEET AND FRAN SPIELMAN
June 23, 2011
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama will bring world leaders to Chicago next May for a G-8 summit and a NATO meeting — gatherings Mayor Rahm Emanuel said will provide an international showcase for the city, despite financial and security headaches.
Obama will announce the meetings — where Afghanistan and the NATO alliance will be on the agenda — during a Wednesday night speech on his plan to draw down troops in Afghanistan.
An Obama White House administration official told the Chicago Sun-Times that the two distinct meetings will take place at the same time in the president’s adopted hometown, in locations to be determined. The 2012 summits in Chicago “will provide President Obama with opportunity to continue his leadership of our most important security alliance, to fulfill commitments made by allied leaders in Lisbon in November 2010, and to sustain our joint work to revitalize NATO to prepare it to effectively meet challenges of the 21st century,’’ the official said.
“They will review the progress in Afghanistan since the Lisbon NATO Summit, and discuss the next phase of our transition to full Afghan security in 2014.”
The meeting will run from May 15-22, 2012 and will be an opportunity for Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Obama’s former White House chief of staff, to show off the city to the world.