Updated: 15-May-2002 NATO Speeches

15 May 2002

SEECAP One Year On

South East Europe Common Assessment Paper on Regional Security Challenges and Opportunities (SEECAP)

  1. We, the Foreign Ministers of countries that endorsed the South East Europe Common Assessment Paper on Regional Security Challenges and Opportunities (SEECAP) at Budapest on May 29, 2001, have reviewed the document within the South East Europe Security Cooperation Steering Group (SEEGROUP).
  2. We reiterate our full support for the SEECAP. It remains a beacon of our common vision and an important impetus for our joint efforts to promote regional cooperation, including concrete initiatives on security sector reform. We remain united in our resolve to foster peace, security and prosperity for all.
  3. The prospects for a stable and prosperous South East Europe have never been better. All countries in the region have democratically elected governments and strengthened rule of law.
  4. The SEECAP has encouraged a stronger dialogue and cooperation amongst our countries. We aim to build upon this success, including through initiatives to bring the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and Bosnia and Herzegovina closer to regional and Euro-Atlantic structures. We welcome the Republic of Moldova's endorsement of the SEECAP.
  5. NATO and the EU will make important decisions this year that will shape the future security environment of Europe. We will align our initiatives accordingly and continue to work towards an integrated and democratic Europe, without dividing lines. The Statements issued in Istanbul on 13 February 2002 and in Athens on 29 March 2002 by the Foreign Ministers of Bulgaria, Greece, Romania and Turkey demonstrate the value of regional cooperation in this context.
  6. We deplore the 11 September terrorist attacks against the United States, reaffirm our solidarity, and pledge to fight terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. SEECAP has accurately identified this evolving threat to our countries, which is closely linked to organized crime, WMD proliferation, and illegal trafficking of arms, drugs and human beings. Their consequences, if left unchallenged, could severely affect the social and economic development of countries in South East Europe.
  7. We welcome the work underway at NATO to adapt the Alliance and emphasize the role of Partners in addressing asymmetrical threats. We attach importance to the work underway to ensure effective consultation and practical cooperation in the context of the EAPC and PfP.
  8. There is a complementary role for regional cooperation in the fight against terrorism and we remain committed to explore this fully. In combating criminal networks, special attention should be paid to measures aimed at reinforcing border security and cross-border cooperation.
  9. In Budapest, we pledged to look for cooperative means to achieve our shared goal of building security and stability throughout South East Europe. We therefore commend the efforts and initiatives taken by the SEEGROUP to implement SEECAP's recommendations.
  10. In this context, we look forward particularly to further progress on the following initiatives:
    1. the comparative study of national security strategies in South East Europe (SEESTUDY);
    2. the project on the exchange of political-military and other early warning, conflict prevention and crisis management information (SEECHANGE);
    3. the exchanges of border security personnel in South East Europe (SEESTAFF);
    4. the SEEMAG initiative, to promote civil-military interaction in security management, to be launched by a workshop in June 2002;
    5. the Compendium of Anti-Terrorism Measures in South East Europe.
  11. We task our representatives in SEEGROUP to continue this work and develop new initiatives in support of SEECAP's vision of a stable, secure and prosperous South East Europe, fully integrated into the Euro-Atlantic community.

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