NATO - North Atlantic Treaty Organization

09 Jun. 200510 Jun. 2005

Statement

by Ambassador Raimund Kunz, Director of the Directorate for Security Policy, Swiss Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sports at the meeting of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council

Mr. Secretary General,
Excellencies,
Ladies and Gentlemen

Switzerland is like many nations around this table transforming its armed forces; aligning them with current needs and challenges. It is only a month ago that the Swiss government confirmed the course of transformation:

  • cutting down the number of forces dedicated to territorial defence,
  • focusing the majority of troops on security operations,
  • and doubling our capabilities for PSOs by the year 2008.

As for our current contributions to PSOs, I am glad to announce that we keep being engaged in South East Europe. Five days ago, the Swiss Parliament decided to maintain the current contribution to KFOR, and to extend the mandate of the Swiss contingent until the end of 2008. In addition, Switzerland has recently enhanced its contribution to EUFOR. We are now providing two "Liaison and Observation Teams" (LOTs), and ? since the beginning of June ? two helicopters, including support teams.

Coming back to our plans for future PSO contributions, doubling the capabilities will be quite an endeavour. An endeavour that Switzerland is determined to make, not least with the help of the Partnership. Instruments like the "Planning and Review Process" (PARP) and the "Operational Capabilities Concept" (OCC) have always been considered helpful and worthwhile in enhancing interoperability. And it is  - for the future - our intention to keep making use of them.

Mr. Secretary General,

Excellencies,

Ladies and Gentlemen

As a Partner nation we hope that NATO stays convinced of the mutual benefits of the cooperation and continues to be committed to Partnership tools, such as PARP and OCC - and thereby allowing Partners to keep pace with the speed of its transformation, which is an indispensable condition for our common work on the ground.