|Updated: 08-Mar-2007||NATO Policy document|
A more Ambitious and Expanded Framework
1. NATO’s Mediterranean Dialogue was initiated in 1994 with the broad objectives of contributing to regional security and stability, achieving better mutual understanding and dispelling any misconceptions between NATO and its Mediterranean partners. Since then, the Dialogue has evolved at a steady pace in accordance with its progressive character. The number of participating countries has increased from the original five to today’s seven while the Dialogue’s political and practical dimensions have been regularly enhanced.
2.In the current security environment, and taking into consideration the need
to tackle successfully today’s challenges and threats including terrorism,
there are greater opportunities for effective cooperation with Mediterranean
Dialogue (MD) partners. Consequently, at their December 2003 meeting
in Brussels, NATO Foreign Ministers looked for additional progress
beyond that achieved since the Prague Summit in upgrading the MD.
the Council in Permanent Session to consider ways to further enhance
NATO’s relationship with all MD partners by generating, in consultation
with them and by the time of the Istanbul Summit, options for establishing
a more ambitious and expanded framework for the MD.
3. In this process, the following principles should be taken into account:
4.Based on these principles, NATO offers to elevate the MD to a genuine partnership whose overall aim will be to contribute towards regional security and stability and complement other international efforts through enhanced practical cooperation, and whose objectives would include:
5. The above-mentioned objectives could be achieved through enhanced cooperation in the following priority areas:
A more ambitious and expanded framework for the MD
6. Based on the above-mentioned principles, objectives and priority areas, a more ambitious and expanded framework for the MD should be developed by building upon the current MD programme including the inventory of possible areas of cooperation established at the Prague Summit, and by making extensive use of lessons learned and, as appropriate, tools from PfP with special emphasis on enhanced practical cooperation.
7. In addition to consultations at working and Ambassadorial levels in the format 26+1 and 26+7, the political dimension should be further enhanced through the inclusion of ad-hoc ministerial/HOSG meetings. Furthermore, at the earliest appropriate time, a joint political declaration with all MD countries could be developed in support of practical cooperation in the above-mentioned priority areas.
8. The practical dimension should be further enhanced through greater emphasis on practical cooperation. In addition to existing MD tools such as the annual Work Programme, the possibility of support through NATO Trust Funds in accordance with the NATO/PfP Trust Fund policy and participation in courses at the NATO School and the NATO Defence College, a number of PfP and PfP-like tools could apply to the new initiative. These could include:
9. This should be complemented by the intensification of practical cooperation in areas currently open to EAPC/PfP countries, with special emphasis on interoperability, defence reform, the fight against terrorism, and other activities aimed at ensuring effective partners’ participation in NATO-led operations.
10. Appropriate legal arrangements may be needed to facilitate full and effective participation of Mediterranean partners. Security agreements may also be needed.
11. Consideration should be given to the possible setting up of appropriate liaison at NATO HQ and the Partnership Coordination Cell (PCC) at Mons in order to enhance coordination of activities, especially in the military field.
12. Regarding the possible expansion of the MD to other interested countries in the region, the progressive character of the MD makes it possible to add new members on a case-by-case basis, as has been the case with Jordan (1995) and Algeria (2000).