German Chancellor Angela Merkel called Monday for a NATO summit next year to give a sign to Russia that NATO valued it as an important partner, dpa reported.
Addressing an annual conference hosted by the German Atlantic Society, she said she had high expectations of the cross-border NATO summit to be held next April in Kehl, Germany and Strasbourg, France.
It is to mark the 60th anniversary of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
She said it would be a "sign of political wisdom" to tell Russia on the 60th anniversary that the NATO countries desired a close partnership with Russia.
She said NATO and Russia needed one another more than ever before as partners.
The summit would be the first time the next US president, Barack Obama, would speak in Europe, added Merkel, who told supporters last week she would resist any call from Obama for German troops to fight in Afghanistan.
NATO's acceptance, success and worldwide standing depended on what it achieved in Afghanistan, she said. Self-sustaining security had not been achieved there yet.
The only approach that would work in Afghanistan was "networked security" provided by the military and civilian elements, she said. She said it was dangerous to force a western model onto Afghanistan.
At the same venue in Berlin, NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer praised Germany's term, networked security, saying it was false to distinguish civilian reconstruction as "good" and military power as "bad."
He said civilian reconstruction was impossible without the military.
Germany's contingent with the International Security Assistance Force is based in northern Afghanistan, far from the war with the Taliban. Berlin has rejected calls to send the troops to the south.