|Updated: 25-Apr-2002||NATO Press Releases|
(2002) 053 25 April 2002
NATO Secretary General awards medals for service in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (1)
The Secretary General of NATO, Lord Robertson of Port Ellen today awarded NATO medals to 16 NATO personnel who took part in last year's Alliance operations in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia(1). In his remarks the Secretary General said the recipients, mostly civilian as well as military personnel normally working at NATO headquarters in Brussels, had all played valuable roles in an "historic" operation that successfully prevented a civil conflict.
He said, "I believe firmly that historians and political science students will look back at this operation as one of the most successful examples ever of preventative diplomacy." He went on to say the medals were symbolic of the importance of individuals, concluding, "And so much of the credit goes to the people gathered here today."
In a personal letter sent from Skopje, and read at the ceremony, President Boris Trajkovski thanked all of those from NATO who had helped his country, sent his best wishes to those receiving the medal, said "It is my great pleasure to share with you my personal appreciation, and that of the Macedonian people, for the NATO missions in my country."
The NATO medal has been awarded previously for service related to SFOR and KFOR operations. Last year the Secretary General approved the award of the NATO medal to mark the service of those who have taken part in Alliance operations connected to the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia(1).
To qualify, personnel must have served in the country for at least 25 days from 1 June 2001 until 27 September 2001, or for at least 30 days since then. Among others entitled to the medal are the military personel who took part in Operation Essential Harvest.
The medal will be awarded to: