Updated: 31-Oct-2000 Ministerial Communiqus


of the

2 Dec. 1994

Progress Report to Ministers

by the Political-Military Steering Committee/
Ad Hoc Group on Cooperation in Peacekeeping

  1. Reflecting the decision of NACC Ministers in Istanbul to combine NACC and PfP efforts in the area of cooperation in peacekeeping, the Political- Military Steering Committee of PfP and the Ad Hoc Group on Cooperation in Peacekeeping have merged. The resulting body (the PMSC/AHG) will continue to serve as the main forum for consultations on political and conceptual issues related to peacekeeping. PMSC/AHG meetings are attended by NACC and PfP members and those CSCE countries with experience in peacekeeping who have expressed a desire to cooperate with the Group. In an effort to enhance coordination of efforts with other organisations, representatives of the CSCE Chairman- in-Office regularly attend PMSC/AHG meetings; members of the United Nations Secretariat have also participated in a number of activities of the group.

  1. Conceptual Approaches
    1. The Group continued discussions, at a Seminar held in Brussels on 5th-7th October 1994, of the evolving conceptual issues related to peacekeeping. The Seminar drew speakers from NATO, the United Nations (including UNHCR and the UN Department for Humanitarian Affairs), the CSCE, the WEU, the European Commission, and the Multinational Force and Observers. Thirteen delegations made formal presentations on the evolution of peacekeeping concepts and doctrines as well as on their national experiences in peacekeeping. The conclusions of the Seminar, and areas for follow-on work, are summarised in Annex II. As a result of the Seminar discussions, the PMSC/AHG has started a thorough review of the definitions, principles and criteria set out in the Report endorsed by NACC Ministers at Athens in June 1993 to see how they can be elaborated upon in light of peacekeeping experience since that time. In addition, the Group is comparing national peacekeeping doctrines in order to determine where there are similarities and differences and to promote better coordination, i.e. carrying out multinational operations.

    2. A Seminar on the legal aspects of peacekeeping has been envisaged for the spring of 1995. Following up a meeting on 21st October of the PMSC/AHG reinforced by legal experts, this Seminar would examine in more depth a number of important legal questions arising from peacekeeping operations, including mandates, the legal basis for presence and action under Chapters VI and VII of the United Nations Charter, limitations on national sovereignty, and legal issues surrounding peacekeeping exercises.

  2. Measures for Practical Cooperation in Peacekeeping
    1. With regard to activities of practical cooperation, work continued based on the programme endorsed by Ministers in December 1993.

    2. Peacekeeping Exercises : During the autumn 1994 the first three joint PfP/NACC peacekeeping exercises were held in Poland, The Netherlands and the North Sea and Skagerrak area. In all, military forces and/or ships from 20 different countries took part in one or more of these exercises; 10 Allies and 10 Partners. In addition many countries sent observers to the exercises.

    3. Thirteen nations and some 650 troops participated in Exercise Cooperative Bridge from the 12th to the 16th of September in Biedrusko, Poland. From the 28th of September to the 7th of October 14 countries provided ships and aircraft for Exercise Cooperative Venture in the North Sea and Skagerrak area. Later in the month, from the 24th to the 28th of October, 12 countries and approximately 1000 troops took part in Exercise Cooperative Spirit in the Veluwe, central Netherlands.

    4. In addition to building confidence and sharing peacekeeping experience, the exercises provided many valuable lessons with respect to both the joint planning and conduct of training and the interoperability of the forces of Allied nations and Partner countries when acting together in peacekeeping. The 1995 exercise programme will build upon the lessons learned during 1994 and other relevant experience, and will promote further interoperability through the much needed development of operational procedures, doctrine, training, command and control, and logistics compatible between NATO and PfP Partners.

    5. A number of bilateral and multilateral exercises have also been conducted in the spirit of PfP such as the US/Russia Peacekeeper 94 and the Bulgarian sponsored maritime exercise Breeze 94. A comprehensive programme of joint exercises is being developed for 1995 that builds toward progressively more complex scenarios involving a wide range of peacekeeping and other activities. As in 1994, a number of nationally sponsored multilateral exercises are also scheduled in the "spirit" of PfP for 1995.

    6. Cooperation in Communications and Command and Control : Communications is an important dimension of peacekeeping operations and the work begun last year under the leadership of The Netherlands continued during the period. An outline Concept of Communications for Peacekeeping Operations is being developed, which will take account of related cooperation efforts on Command and Control. Work on the feasibility study on the development of a data base for communications equipment continues. In addition, the United Kingdom has taken the lead in developing further mutual understanding of the complex and important matter of Command and Control in peacekeeping operations, including the holding of a seminar on the subject in summer 1994 and the consolidation of national views on this issue.

    7. Cooperation in Training : In mid-1994 Denmark issued a first edition of a Peacekeeping Course Handbook, summarising information provided by NACC countries on national peacekeeping courses and other related training capabilities. An updated and more comprehensive second edition of this compendium will be issued in the Spring of 1995. Work is also continuing under Danish lead on the development of standards for peacekeeping training. During the period a number of specific peacekeeping training courses were conducted under NATO(SHAPE) and national auspices, including courses for personnel from NACC countries in Poland, the Czech Republic and the Nordic countries. In 1995 a number of PfP nations are offering a range of courses. In addition, the number of peacekeeping courses at the SHAPE school will increase, and it is planned to develop and offer an introductory course on NATO logistics.

    8. Cooperation in Logistics : As a follow up to the successful logistics seminar in late 1993 and the subsequent workshop in 1994, a Compendium of Lessons Learned during Logistics Support of peacekeeping operations was developed and circulated to nations. In 1995, in addition to the logistics course referred to in paragraph 10 above, it is planned to examine logistics field procedures in peacekeeping operations and to consider the feasibility of establishing a register of peacekeeping and humanitarian assistance equipment.

    9. Cooperation in Peacekeeping : The PMSC/AHG noted that, as a practical outcome of the foregoing, an important step towards further cooperation in peacekeeping had been taken through the deployment of a Lithuanian platoon as part of the Danish Battalion in the UNPROFOR forces in Sector North (DANBAT) in Croatia. The deployment is the outcome of the bilateral agreement between Denmark and Lithuania, and is also seen as a step towards the development of the Joint Baltic Peacekeeping Battalion.

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