Updated: 23-Oct-2000 Ministerial Communiqus


New York
26th Sept. 1950

Final Communiqué

Chairman: Mr. Acheson


Integrated military force to be set up under centralized command-- The Federal Republic of Germany to contribute to defence of Western Europe.

The North Atlantic Council reconvened today to resume discussions. The Council has been in recess since Monday, September 18. During the interval of this recess the Foreign Ministers have been in consultation with their governments.

The Council agreed upon the establishment at the earliest possible date of an integrated force under centralized command, which shall be adequate to deter aggression and to ensure the defence of Western Europe.

The concept of the integrated force approved by the Council is based upon the following principles:

  1. The force will be organized under the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and will be subject to political and strategic guidance exercised by the appropriate agencies of that organization.

  2. The force will be under a Supreme Commander who will have sufficient delegated authority to ensure that national units allocated to his command are organized and trained into an effective integrated force in time of peace as well as in the event of war.

  3. The Supreme Commander will be supported by an international staff representing; all nations contributing to the force.

  4. Pending the appointment of a Supreme Commander there is to be appointed a Chief-of-Staff who will have responsibility for training and organization.

  5. The Standing Group of the Military Committee of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization will be responsible for higher strategic direction of the integrated force.

The finalisation by the Council of the arrangements for the integrated force must await the recommendations of the Defence Committee on the following points:

The Council has requested the Defence Committee of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to work out the organization of the integrated force and to recommend the steps necessary to bring this force into being at the earliest possible time. The Council has also requested the Defence Committee to consider changes and simplifications required in the military structure of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and related military organizations and to consider how best to ensure the necessary close working relationship between the Standing Group and the member governments not represented on it.

The Council agreed that in order to bring the integrated force into effective being all available manpower and productive resources should be fully utilized for the defence of Western Europe. To this end the North Atlantic Treaty Organization will consider the precise character and composition of the forces to be allocated to the integrated force by member governments. Decisions regarding the allocation of such forces will be sought from member governments at an early date.

The utilization of German manpower and resources was discussed in the light of views recently expressed, by democratic leaders in Germany and elsewhere. The Council was in agreement that Germany should be enabled to contribute to the build-up of the defence of Western Europe, and noting that the Occupying Powers were studying the matter, requested the Defence Committee to make recommendations at the earliest possible date as to the methods by which Germany could most usefully make its contribution.

In accordance with the policy of annual rotation of the Chairmanship the Foreign Minister of Belgium, The Honorable Paul van Zeeland, has assumed the Chairmanship of the Council for the coming year.

In adjourning their meeting the Ministers reaffirmed the unity of the free peoples which they represent in their common determination to preserve the peace, the security and the freedom of the Atlantic community.

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