Final Communiqué

  • 15 Dec. 1966 - 16 Dec. 1966
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  • Last updated: 05 Nov. 2008 19:43

<p>Declaration on Germany - East- West relations - Outer Space Disarmament - Economic questions and Kennedy Round - Resolution on Technological Co-operation - Aid to Greece and Turkey- Cyprus "watching brief" - Broad analysis of international development

  1. Ministers of member governments of the Atlantic Alliance have met in Paris.
  2. The North Atlantic Council, meeting on 15th and 16th December, reaffirmed the purposes and principles of the Alliance, and their resolve to ensure stability and well-being in the North Atlantic area, and to unite their efforts for the preservation of peace and security for their peoples.
  3. The Alliance has demonstrated its value by successfully averting threats to peace and safeguarding the security of the Atlantic area. By its defensive strength including its effective means of deterrence, as well as by maintaining its solidarity, the Alliance has produced the basis for the present marked reduction of tension in Europe. This basis remains essential for the security of the Alliance and for progress towards a peaceful solution of outstanding problems, including the problem of Germany.
  4. The Council associated itself with the views expressed in the Declaration by the Governments of France, the Federal Republic of Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States which appears as an Annex to this Communiqué. With regard to Berlin, the Council stands by its declaration of 16th December 1958.
  5. Ministers agreed on the need for continued efforts to achieve a peaceful solution of the German problem to meet the German people's fundamental right to reunification. So long as Germany continues to be divided there cannot be a genuine and stable settlement in Europe. The peaceful progress of Europe must proceed from reciprocal confidence and trust, which will take time to grow from sustained policies of co-operative effort and better understanding on both sides. It means especially removing barriers to freer and more friendly reciprocal exchanges between countries of different social and economic systems.
  6. For their part, the members of the Atlantic Alliance have confirmed their intention to continue their efforts to secure better relations with the Soviet Union and the states of Eastern Europe in the political, economic, social, scientific and cultural fields. Ministers examined the report on East/West relations prepared in accordance with the instructions given at the last Ministerial meeting in June 1966. They welcomed the wide range of suggestions in the report and emphasized their willingness to explore ways of developing co-operation with the Soviet Union and the states of Eastern Europe in tasks of interest and benefit to all concerned. They, moreover, noted that contacts, conversations and agreements have recently increased. In the field of East/West relations, there are clearly different approaches which can be adopted, whether between individual countries or in a wider international framework.
  7. Ministers welcomed the approval by the United Nations Outer Space Committee of a draft treaty on the peaceful use of outer space. Encouraged by this, they affirmed their determination to continue to consult actively on problems of disarmament, to keep under review the progress of international discussions on measures to prevent the proliferation's of nuclear weapons, and to seek agreement on satisfactory arms control measures which might contribute to the improvement of European security and the relaxation of tension. In so doing, they hoped to bring about conditions which could permit a gradual and balanced revision in force levels on both sides. At the same time, they reaffirmed their conviction that no acceptable permanent solution to the question of European security is possible without agreement on the most critical political problems.
  8. Turning to economic questions, Ministers noted that the gap between the most advanced and the less-developed countries had widened further. They reaffirmed that all advanced countries, whatever their economic systems, had a responsibility to offer assistance to developing countries.
  9. Ministers expressed the hope that the present multilateral tariff negotiations (Kennedy Round) would be carried to a successful conclusion and would promote the expansion of trade to the greater benefit of all. They also attached great importance to the initiatives designed to overcome the existence of two trading areas in Western Europe and to facilitate technical co-operation between the European countries concerned.
  10. On the initiative of the Italian Government there was an exchange of views on questions arising out of the uneven technological development of different countries. Ministers, after stressing the importance and complexity of this problem, invited the Permanent Representatives to study the procedure which might be followed for further examination and implementation of the Italian proposals, and to report their findings to the Spring Ministerial meeting. A Resolution on this subject was adopted and is attached.
  11. The Council reaffirmed the importance of continuing to assist Greece and Turkey within the framework of the Alliance in order to maintain the effectiveness of their contribution to the common defence. Recommending wide participation in the aid program, the Council agreed that this program should be extended to cover the period 1966-1970.
  12. Ministers took note of the Secretary General's report on his "Watching Brief" concerning Greek-Turkish relations and reaffirmed their support for the continuation of his activities in this respect. They expressed their firm hope that the continuing exchanges of views between Turkey and Greece on the Cyprus question and on Greek-Turkish relations would contribute to bringing about positive results. They reiterated their appreciation of the presence of the United Nations Force in Cyprus and the hope that an improvement in the situation in the island would be achieved. They stressed that no action should be taken which could worsen the situation in the island and increase the tension.
  13. On the proposal of the Belgian Government and recalling the initiative taken by Canada in December 1964, the Council resolved to undertake a broad analysis of international developments since the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty in 1949. Its purpose would be to determine the influence of such developments on the Alliance and to identify the tasks which lie before it, in order to strengthen the Alliance as a factor for a durable peace. A Resolution on this subject was adopted and is attached.
  14. Ministers approved a report on Civil Emergency Planning. They noted that a reappraisal of these activities within NATO had been completed and they reaffirmed the importance of such planning for the protection of civil populations and in the support of overall defence.
  15. Ministers met as the Defence Planning Committee on 14th December, 1966. As a further step in the process initiated at Athens in 1962, they approved recommendations regarding nuclear planning and consultation, submitted by the Special Committee of Defence Ministers. They agreed to establish in NATO two permanent bodies for nuclear planning--a policy body called the Nuclear Defence Affairs Committee, open to all NATO countries, and, subordinate to it, a Nuclear Planning Group of seven members which will handle the detailed work
  16. To improve the ability of NATO to engage in timely consultation in the event of crisis, Ministers approved the development of new arrangements for the rapid exchange and the more effective use of relevant information and data. To facilitate such exchange of data, Ministers approved in principle the establishment of a new NATO-wide communications scheme along the lines recommended by the Special Committee. They also examined a report from the Special Committee on possible improved procedures for consultation. They agreed that further studies and planning in this important area should be undertaken, and requested the Secretary General and Permanent Representatives to consider how this work could most usefully be carried forward. The Special Committee, set up in June 1965, has now completed its task.
  17. Ministers reviewed reports on the present status of NATO's military effort and noted the force commitments undertaken by governments for 1967 under the NATO Force Plan adopted by Defence Ministers in July 1966.
  18. After a comprehensive review of questions of strategy, force requirements, and resources, in the course of which they discussed the military capabilities and intentions of the Soviet Union, Ministers considered the political, strategic and economic guidance to be given to the NATO Military Authorities for their appreciation of the military situation as it will affect NATO up to and including 1975. They gave instructions for further studies in these fields in the light of this discussion.
  19. On the basis of the results of numerous studies conducted since July 1966, Ministers gave instructions for further work to be carried out within the framework of the new defence planning review procedures due to be initiated in January 1967 for the regular projection of NATO force planning five years ahead. This work will be directed, primarily, towards securing the best balance of forces and the most effective use of the resources made available by NATO governments for defence.
  20. Ministers underlined the importance of the defence of the flank regions of the North Atlantic Treaty area and issued further guidance regarding the provision of external reinforcements in defence emergencies. They also gave instructions concerning the improvement of the local forces in the South-Eastern Region. Substantial progress was made towards agreement upon the common funding of the exercises of the Allied Command Europe Mobile Force.
  21. Ministers agreed to study whether a NATO satellite communication program should be established which would provide for a co-operative effort by member nations in the new and developing field of space technology and its application to NATO's vital communications needs. Meanwhile, an experimental project was agreed which will provide a link between SHAPE at its new headquarters and AFSOUTH at Naples.
  22. France did not take part in the discussions referred to in paragraphs 15 to 21 and did not associate herself with the corresponding decisions.
  23. The Council decided that a new permanent headquarters should be constructed at the Heysel in Brussels, and a new temporary headquarters at Evere, also in Brussels. The Council expressed its gratitude to the Belgian Government for having made available these two sites.
  24. The regular Spring Ministerial Meeting will be held in Luxembourg in 1967.


  1. Established in 1963, since 1966 the DPC meets at Permanent Representatives or Ministerial level under the chairmanship of the Secretary General. It deals with all questions concerning the integrated defence system in which fourteen countries take part.