Report on the Partnership Action Plan against terrorism

  • 23 Jun. 2004
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  • Last updated 31-Oct-2011 16:46


  1. The Partnership Action Plan against Terrorism (PAP-T) remains the main platform for joint efforts by Allies and Partners in the fight against terrorism. It serves as a useful tool in facilitating NATO’s strategic outreach to Partners, particularly from Central Asia and the Caucasus and, as the first result-oriented action plan, contributes to NATO’s general effort to keep Partnership active and relevant in the present security environment.
  2. The Istanbul Summit provides an opportunity to review and invigorate the implementation of the PAP-T, in the context of a wider review of the objectives and priorities of Partnership in relation to all threats and challenges to the Euro-Atlantic security, including terrorism.
  3. As the overarching document on NATO’s relations with Partners and third states on combating terrorism, the PAP-T may provide a framework for some of the terrorism-related components of the new initiatives discussed within the Alliance. Mediterranean Dialogue Partners and other states may participate in these initiatives on a case-by-case basis. The current implementation of the PAP-T may also be enhanced through increased co-operation with international organisations. The following suggestions are offered in this context.

Developing Pratical Cooperation

4.1. Operations and Exercises: The success and high visibility of Operation Active Endeavour (OAE) has resulted in the NAC tasking the NMAs to develop a package of measures for the involvement of EAPC Partners, MD countries and selected contact countries in the framework of OAE and to provide a roadmap on how to proceed. Any specific offer from EAPC Partners, MD countries and selected contact countries would then be subject to approval on a case-by-case basis as well as the specific measures of support. Such involvement would add substance and visibility to the common fight against terrorism. Collecting and sharing information on suspect vessels is one possible area of co-operation, as stipulated in article 16.1.2. of the PAP-T. In consultation with Partners, the NMAs are currently reviewing potential exercises in the support of PAP-T. It is envisaged that starting from 2004 onwards, the Partnership Work Programme will see a step-by-step introduction of anti-terrorism related training events, mainly as building blocks added to already planned exercises. In this framework, it might be worth considering undertaking an exercise tailored for Partner participation in activities against terrorism. This would be in line with Article 16.2.5. of PAP-T, which allows for the participation of Partners in training opportunities and exercises related to terrorism. The NMAs could be mandated to explore the feasibility of this option.

Action item: The NMAs to provide advice on the organisation of an anti-terrorism exercise, taking into account the Alliance decision regarding Partner participation in Operation Active Endeavour.

4.2. Border Security and Management: Borders are one of the first lines of defence against terrorism. At various occasions, a number of NATO nations and Partners noted the need for further efforts to implement the PAP-T with special emphasis on relevant aspects of border management and security. As part of these efforts, consideration should be given to the relevant aspects of the fight against illegal trafficking. In the PfP framework, Partnership Goals for border security are being addressed in the PARP to those countries that seek them. The NATO-initiated Ohrid Border Process has, inter alia, shown the strength of concerted approach by international organisations. With regard to the application of this approach to other regions, such as the Caucasus and Central Asia, lessons could be drawn for further consideration from the Ohrid experience, such as the importance of practical and pragmatic co-operation and a systemic approach through integrated border management. In this respect, a workshop with the Ohrid Partners (OSCE, EU and the Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe) could be useful in exploring the possibility of applying elements of this process to other regions. The suggestions by Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan to organise follow-up meetings to the EAPC/SEEGROUP workshop on integrated border management, held in Tirana in January 2004, should be seen as part of a functional approach, which supports the overall importance of border security and management in countering terrorism.

Action item: IS to give support to the workshops planned by Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan.

4.3. Training: The NMAs are currently reviewing potential training activities in support of PAP-T. This could include modifications to existing courses currently open to Partners at the NATO School in Oberammergau. The specific request by Tajikistan for border guard training could also be evaluated by the PMSC, in line with articles of 16.3.1 and 16.5.1 of the PAP-T. As with exercises in paragraph 4.1 above, it is envisaged that starting from 2004 onwards, the Partnership Work Programme will see increased anti-terrorism related training opportunities.

Action item: PMSC and NMAs to evaluate Tajikistan’s request for Border Guard training and possible other opportunities for training related to the fight against terrorism.

4.4. Partnership Goals: Article 16.2.2. of the PAP-T stipulates that Partnership Goals aiming at improving the capabilities of Partners to participate in activities against terrorism will be identified within PARP and will also be communicated to Partners, which are not participating in this process. The approach to date has been to highlight existing Partnership Goals, which seek capabilities that could also be utilised against terrorism, rather than to create new ones.

Action item: The PMSC and the Partners concerned should give special consideration during the review process for Partnership Goals 2004 to the Partnership Goals, which seek capabilities that could also be utilised against terrorism.

4.5. Security and Threat of Munitions and SALW: SALW, including Man Portable Air Defence Systems (MANPADS), used by terrorist groups and criminal organisations, originate largely from unsecured excess stocks of national armed forces as well as from grey arms suppliers, diversions and private holdings. PfP tools offer a broad programme of complementary practical measures addressing counter measures and ensuring the safe storage, handling and destruction of munitions and SALW including MANPADS, and other shoulder fired rocket and grenade launchers. Specific activities, including expert visits to assess security procedures and development of destruction plans, including the possible use of Trust Funds are an integral part of on-going work on defence reform and restructuring of armed forces.

Action item: The PMSC, taking into account also the responsibilities of other organisations in this field, to ensure that the harmonised EAPC/PWP will identify specific activities in support of the PAP-T, such as seminars/workshops and PMSC meetings with Partners focused on efforts to counter threats posed by SALW and MANPADS, including actions being taken to enhance security of aircraft and airfields and efforts to ensure appropriate security including storage, transport and safe destruction. Specific emphasis needs to be given to “awareness”, “registration”, and “export control legislation” and “stockpile security”.

4.6. Anti-Terrorism Related Intelligence Exchanges: Since the establishment of the Intelligence Liaison Unit (ILU) a reasonable quantity of intelligence reports has been exchanged. Several liaison visits were carried out in various PfP countries to provide clarification about ILU's objectives and activities. Since its inception, ILU has greatly helped in promoting co-operation and communication with partners. In early March 2003, the expansion of ILU activities to those Mediterranean Dialogue countries, which have signed a security agreement and have been certified by NOS, was approved. The integration of the terrorism-related functions of the ILU into the Terrorist Threat Intelligence Unit (TTIU), which is expected to be operational by the time of the Istanbul Summit, is also expected to enhance the quality of the co-operation, and provide impetus to the implementation of the PAP-T.

Action item: The IS/IMS and involved Committees to consider ways of further improving the functions of ILU.

4.7. Combating the financing of terrorism: Efforts have been undertaken to address issues related to financing terrorism. A workshop in Geneva on "Combating the Financing of Terrorism" highlighted that cooperation between States, the Private Sector and International Organisations has but started and needs to be further strengthened. There is a need for an integrated and interdisciplinary approach both at the national and international level, and Partnership can make a useful contribution via PAP-T that supports and complements the efforts of other international organisations directly involved in this issue. The NATO Defence College has taken up the issue and will dedicate an October 2004 event to financial and economic aspects of the fight against terrorism. A further workshop, focussing more specifically on the role of the Private Sector, is already being envisaged by Switzerland for spring 2005.

Action item: IS to support the preparations of the planned workshop.

4.8 Consequence management: Substantial work has been undertaken to enhance national capabilities to contribute to consequence management. A Civil Emergency Planning Action Plan for the Improvement of Civil Preparedness for Possible Attacks against the Civilian Population with Chemical, Biological, or Radiological Agents has been approved and updated already twice. There have been achievements like an inventory of national capabilities and work is ongoing in a variety of fields, such as the facilitation of vital cross border transport movements, consequence management following a WMD attack or protection of critical infrastructure, as agreed in the CEP action plan. The role of the EADRCC has been crucial in terms of progress in this area. Consideration should be given to further enhance the role of the EADRCC in the light of this progress. Civil-military cooperation, the coordination of national responses to requests for assistance and the interface with the EADRCC should be emphasised. In this respect, CM exercises to test the decision-making processes and the operational procedures are essential. Consideration should also be given, on a case-by-case basis, to practical cooperation with MD countries.

Action items:

  1. The SCEPC to follow up to the CEP Action Plan, with special emphasis to CM exercises.
  2. The Senior Defence Group on Proliferation is invited to consider elaborating suggestions for appropriate Partner involvement in force protection against WMD attacks.

4.9. EAPC Political Seminar on Terrorism: During the EAPC Ambassadors’ meeting on 21 April, several delegations expressed their wish to hold an EAPC seminar on Terrorism, which could serve as a follow-up to previous seminars organised on this subject. Such a seminar could take stock of the work achieved so far, and would serve as an appropriate platform to discuss the implementation of the action items proposed in this paper. Switzerland offered to host such a seminar.

Action item: The PC/PMSC to discuss the specifics about the follow-up Political Seminar on Terrorism taking into account Switzerland’s offer.

Extending Participation

  1. Further Involvement of Med Dialogue Partners in PAP-T: The PAP-T envisages the possibility for Mediterranean Partners to participate in workshops, seminars and other activities on a case-by-case basis. On 28-30 October 2002, the 5th MD International Research Seminar (IRS) was held at NADEFCOL in Rome and co-sponsored by Algeria. (The MD IRS analysed the perspectives of security in the Mediterranean region, especially in regard to terrorism-related issues.) NADEFCOL is ready to continue organising workshops, seminars and other academics activities on terrorism-related topics as directed by the MC. Further, co-operation in the area of counter terrorism is increasing with the extension of the mandate of the EAPC/PfP Intelligence Liaison Unit to include MD countries which have signed a Security Agreement with NATO and which have been certified by NOS. The possibility of involving MD nations in the PAP-T could be further exploited.

Action items:

  1. While the future of the MD is still being discussed by Allies in the run-up to Istanbul, the IS should draw up a consolidated list of co-operation proposals already made by MD Partners related to combating terrorism, to be addressed in due course within the PAP-T framework.
  2. MD countries, which have not done so already, should again be offered the opportunity to conclude a Security Agreement with NATO to benefit from full participation into these activities.
  1. Giving support to regional cooperation: The main structured regional cooperation set up by the initiative of the Alliance is the South East European Initiative (SEEI). Regional countries and Allies come together to discuss various issues under this initiative in the format of South East European Security Cooperation Steering Group (SEEGROUP). SEEGROUP previously worked on a project on Compendium of Measures adopted against Terrorism and now is discussing a project on “increasing cooperation in the fight against terrorism” in line with the overall aims of the PAP-T. The significance of SEEGROUP also emanates from its inclusion of Serbia & Montenegro and Bosnia & Herzegovina, and this project could be a useful tool in furthering cooperation with these countries in line with the Alliance’s fight against terrorism. Consideration should also be given to including these two countries in PAP-T activities on a case-by-case basis.

Action item: The PMSC to give consideration for possible cooperation with Serbia & Montenegro and Bosnia & Herzegovina in PAP-T activities on a case-by-case basis.

Improving Co-operation with other International Institutions

  1. Terrorism-related issues have become an important part of NATO’s structured dialogue with other international organisations, including the UN, EU and OSCE. Co-operation with these international organisations in the framework of PAP-T may be bolstered through a new set of activities. In such cooperative efforts NATO would need to draw upon its comparative advantages, in particular setting standards for interoperability and preparing appropriate forces and capabilities by high-level training and exercises, but also its commitment to common values and solidarity in their implementation, and its role as ‘facilitator’ in areas where it does not have a primary responsibility, such as border security or consequence management.

Action item: Representatives of other International Organisations, in particular the UN, EU and OSCE should, to the extent possible, be invited to and their expert advice be sought for in terms of seminars and other activities organised under the PAP-T.

7.1. NATO-UN: The UN has a primary role in the international community’s response to terrorism and NATO is committed to co-operation with the UN, and in particular with the UN-CTC, in this field. The PAP-T was communicated to the UNSCR as an initial contribution to the implementation of UNSCR 1373. Allies and Partners, in close coordination with the UN Counter Terrorism Committee secretariat could support the implementation of UNSCR 1373 by:

  • enhancing co-operation as appropriate where the PAP-T can add value in the fields of border control, economic and financial dimensions of terrorism, WMD-related terrorism, arms control, and SALW, to reflect the priorities established in UNSCR 1373. Activities in these areas could also be specifically tailored to assist Partners/MD countries, within means and capabilities of NATO, in fulfilling their commitments under the Resolution 1373.
  • sharing information with the UN-CTC in priority areas established in UNSCR 1373 and other UN Resolutions, and reflected in the PAP-T, following agreed procedures for information exchange.
  • supporting the ratification and encouraging the implementation of the UN Conventions against terrorism. NATO Member States and Partners are encouraged to ensure that all requests for information from the CTC are answered fully. A follow-up matrix, by the IS, could help track progress.
  • sharing information within the PAP-T in UN-CTC priority areas1 reflected in the PAP-T could be done through workshops specifically tailored to address these priority areas, like the Geneva workshop, on 27-28 November 2003 on “Combating the Financing of Terrorism”.
  • looking for possibilities to enhance cooperation in existing subjects with other UN or UN related organisations like IAEA, WHO and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

Action item: The IS to follow up the five points above in coordination with Allies and Partners through the NATO Committees concerned.

7.2. NATO-EU: Allies and Partners might identify a number of areas addressed in the PAP-T, which could be explored jointly with the EU. It is important to avoid dysfunctional duplication and seek complementarity.

Action item: The IS to propose selected PAP-T activities in a NATO-EU co-sponsored seminar on terrorism, which could provide a good opportunity to trigger such co-operation.

7.3. NATO-OSCE: NATO-OSCE co-operative activities are open to Partners. Those related to terrorism include work on border control, MANPADS, arms export control and economic and financial aspects of terrorism. In particular, the activities related to border control, as outlined in paragraph 4.2. can be further explored with the OSCE.

Action item: The IS to include the above items into the Staff Talks with the OSCE.

7.4. NATO-EUROCONTROL: Co-operation with EUROCONTROL will continue in developing civil-military air traffic procedures in light of the new security environment including consideration of possible procedures to reduce the risks from MANPADS threats to civil and military aviation.

Action item: NATO/EUROCONTROL Air Traffic Management Security Co-ordinating Group (NEASCOG), which is a joint NATO/EUROCONTROL effort under the auspices of NATO Air Traffic Management Committee (NATMC), to explore ways to implement Article 16.2.3. of PAP-T.

7.5 Cooperation with other regional and sub-regional organisations: Allies and Partners cooperate in various fora on anti terrorism beyond the main international organisations mentioned above, one such case being the Office of the Special Co-ordinator of the Stability Pact for South Eastern Europe. Both the memberships of these regional and sub-regional organisations and their approach to anti terrorism activities could differ according to the nature of the organisation and the geographical area where they are active. It would therefore be useful to exchange information on their activities, as a first step to evaluation of possibilities of cooperation.

Action item: Allies and Partner nations are encouraged to exchange views on the activities of regional and sub-regional organisation, in which they participate, in the fight against terrorism. Possibilities for cooperation should be considered following such exchanges.

Improving Supporting Mechanisms

  1. Development of the mentoring mechanism: As defined in article 16.5.3. of the PAP-T, Allies could further develop the mentoring concept as a mechanism for exchange of experience and thereby for supporting implementation. The UK workshop held in December 2003 is a good example of the mentoring mechanism, where SEE countries were briefed on the obligations imposed by the UN counter terrorism conventions and on the UK’s own implementation process. Allies and Partners may take the lead on similar initiatives by sponsoring terrorism-related conference/seminar/workshops to share experiences.

Action item: The PC/PMSC to discuss the areas, which could best be suited for that approach and the way ahead.

  1. Monitoring and Coordination: The PAP-T remains the main platform for joint efforts by Allies and Partners in the fight against terrorism. Joint meetings of the PC and the PMSC remain the main forum for the stocktaking of the implementation of the PAP-T and for any discussion relating to the Action Plan.

However, taking into account the increasing variety of activities since the launch of the PAP-T, including additional activities that might emanate from this paper and other current initiatives, consideration should be given to whether optimal use is already being made of the range of “EAPC/PfP mechanisms in accordance with the principles of inclusiveness and self-differentiation…” (PAP-T Art. 12), or whether the possible development of new mechanisms should be examined. Such new mechanisms might, for example, provide input to the joint meetings of PC and PMSC in EAPC format by drawing on more systematic exchanges between interested Allies and Partners, as well as on a wider variety of expertise on anti terrorism to create further dynamics and avoid duplication. Creation of an Ad Hoc Working Group has been mentioned as one way of moving forward for more systematic exchanges between interested Allies and Partners. The development of the Trust Fund mechanism should also be carefully followed in this regard.

On the technical level PRIME could also prove a useful supportive tool for stocktaking of PAP-T related activities. PRIME is currently being upgraded to become the electronic management tool for all event-oriented NATO cooperation programs. The harmonisation of the EAPC Action Plan and the Partnership Work Programme foresees the creation of an area of cooperation "Response to Terrorism" which will support all EAPC and PWP activities pertaining to the PAP-T. Furthermore, the new functionalities of PRIME should be fully employed to take stock of activities undertaken, to collect feedback on results achieved and to gain indications about appropriate future priorities.

Action item: The PC/PMSC to evaluate the follow-up mechanisms needed for the implementation of the PAP-T, including an annual informal review and orientation meeting to be organised at NATO HQ with participation of Allied and Partner counter terrorism experts, possibly back to back with a similar event organised by NOS.


  1. Any exercise to enhance the implementation of the PAP-T must take into account the scarcity of human and financial resources within the IS/IMS.


  1. The North Atlantic Council is invited to:
    • approve this report;
    • agree the action items and task the relevant committees and bodies for their implementation;
    • agree to submit this report to the NAC in HOSG session in Istanbul for endorsement;
    • agree to forward the report to the EAPC Ambassadors for endorsement and;
    • agree to include this report in the documents for endorsement by the EAPC HOSG in Istanbul.
  1.  These issues were highlighted during the address of the Chairman of the UN-CTC, Amb. Arias, to the EAPC on 19 November 2003.