16 Dec. 1999
the meeting of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council
- The Foreign Ministers and Representatives of the member countries
of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) met in Brussels today.
The Secretary-General of the Western European Union also attended the
meeting. Ministers welcomed Ireland as the newest member of the EAPC.
- The Secretary General of NATO informed the EAPC about the main results
of the North Atlantic Council meeting on 15 December.
- Dr. Bernard Kouchner, Special Representative of the UN Secretary
General for Kosovo, briefed Ministers on UNMIK activities in Kosovo.
- Ministers exchanged views on the situation in Kosovo and commended
the successful operations being carried out by KFOR in close cooperation
with UNMIK. Ministers underscored the importance of nations contributing
sufficient resources, financial and personnel, to support the reconstruction
effort in Kosovo. They reiterated their commitment to the full implementation
of UNSCR 1244 and recognised that the task of building a peaceful and
multiethnic society in Kosovo would demand long-term attention. In that
context, they voiced concern about the continuing ethnic violence on
the ground despite KFOR's determined efforts to stop it.
- Ministers underlined the importance of the consultations that had
taken place within the EAPC framework on operations in Kosovo and Bosnia-Herzegovina,
and welcomed the intensification of these in accordance with the Political
Military Framework for NATO-led Operations put in place at the Washington
Summit earlier this year.
- Ministers expressed profound concern about the conflict in Chechnya
and the continuing violence, particularly the use of force against the
civilian population. They also condemned terrorism in all its forms.
They called for the utmost restraint, the fullest protection and humanitarian
assistance for the civilian population and refugees and urged the immediate
renewal of dialogue to achieve a political solution. Ministers were
also deeply concerned about the impact of the crisis on the countries
in the region and the risks of the conflict undermining stability and
security throughout the region.
- Ministers highlighted the fundamental importance of the EAPC/PfP
framework in efforts to prevent conflict, manage crises and deal effectively
with security challenges in the Euro-Atlantic area. They discussed the
activities of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council during the last
year and exchanged views on how political and security related cooperation
might be further enhanced throughout the Euro-Atlantic area. They took
note of the various initiatives that have been undertaken by the EAPC
in this regard: they welcomed the work undertaken to complement and
support international action in the fields of dealing with the Challenge
of Small Arms and Light Weapons and promoting Global Humanitarian Mine
Action; and they supported work in the EAPC to foster practical regional
cooperation in the Caucasus.
- Ministers welcomed the work underway in the EAPC and PfP to promote
further practical regional cooperation in South East Europe, directed
at contributing to the building of lasting peace and stability in the
region, and complementing the work of the Alliance and the Stability
- Ministers welcomed progress made since the Washington Summit on the
implementation of the enhanced and more operational Partnership, including
implementation of the Political-Military Framework for NATO-led Operations,
an expanded and adapted Planning and Review Process and enhanced defence-related
and military cooperation. EAPC members also endorsed the Operational
Capabilities Concept for NATO-led PfP Operations, intended to offer
means and mechanisms to reinforce PfP's operational capabilities through
closer military cooperation. They welcomed the further development of
the PfP Training and Education Enhancement Programme, aimed at increasing
the scope, level and efficiency of training and education efforts to
meet future demands of the Partnership.
- Ministers endorsed and agreed to make public the EAPC Action Plan
for 2000-2002, which is the main document guiding the cooperative work
of the Alliance and its Partners for the next two years.
- Ministers will meet again in May 2000.