The Munich Security Conference is underway with European efforts to end the fighting in Ukraine expected to dominate.
Some 400 politicians and experts will spend the next three days discussing the crisis as well as the global fight against terrorism.
There was controversy before the talks began with Turkey refusing to attend because of Israel’s participation. Relations between both countries remain strained since a major rupture in 2010, when Israeli soldiers killed nine Turks travelling in a Turkish-led humanitarian aid convoy attempting to break a blockade of Gaza.
NATO’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg made clear the focus would be on Ukraine and the Franco-German peace initiative.
“The situation is critical and it’s urgent to find a solution and therefore I and NATO give our full support to this renewed initiative,” he said.
Also close to the top of the agenda is Russia’s alleged increased military activity, on the edges of UK airspace as well as other alliance states around the Baltic.