NATO members extend secretary general's term

NATO members agreed to keep Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in the post for the group's top civilian until 2022, the alliance announced Thursday.

“Honoured by the decision by the #NATO Allies to extend my term as Secretary General until 30 September 2022. Together we will continue to adapt & modernise our Alliance to keep it fit for the future,” Stoltenberg tweeted.

The announcement comes days before Stoltenberg will be in the United States to celebrate the alliance’s 70th anniversary.

Stoltenberg’s trip includes a visit to the White House on Tuesday, an address to Congress on Wednesday and meeting of NATO’s foreign ministers at the State Department on Thursday.

Stoltenberg, whose term was set to expire in 2020, has been secretary general since 2014 at a time when allies have grappled with how to handle a resurgent Russia.

In the last couple years, Stoltenberg has had to walk a tightrope as President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump conversation with foreign leader part of complaint that led to standoff between intel chief, Congress: report Pelosi: Lewandowski should have been held in contempt 'right then and there' Trump to withdraw FEMA chief nominee: report MORE rattles allies with threats to leave the alliance if members do not pay more for their own defense.

Amid the threats, Stoltenberg has taken pains not to get on Trump’s bad side, repeatedly crediting him with allies’ increased defense spending.

“NATO allies have heard the president loud and clear, and now NATO allies are stepping up," Stoltenberg said in January. 

Trump, meanwhile, has called Stoltenberg “Trump’s biggest fan.”