Updated: 25-Jun-2007 NATO Press Releases


16 Feb. 2003

Decision Sheet of the Defence Planning Committee

NATO Support to Turkey within the Framework of Article 4
of the North Atlantic Treaty

At the Prague Summit, the NATO Allies committed themselves to take effective action to assist and support the efforts of the United Nations to ensure full and immediate compliance by Iraq, without conditions or restrictions, with UN Security Council Resolution 1441. This remains our policy.

Following Turkey’s request for consultations within the framework of Article 4 of the North Atlantic Treaty, as expressed in its letter of 10 February 2003, and pursuant to Article 4 of the Treaty which states that “the Parties will consult whenever, in the opinion of any of them, the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the Parties is threatened”, Allies have begun consultations.

As part of these consultations, the Chairman of the Military Committee briefed the North Atlantic Council on 10 February 2003, assessing the potential threat against Turkey and informing about planning requirements for the reinforcement of Turkey’s defence, including relevant timelines.

In this context, the DPC:

  • notes the Turkish request for consultations within the framework of Article 4 of the North Atlantic Treaty;
  • notes that all Allies have reaffirmed their determination to fulfil all of their obligations deriving from the spirit and the letter of the North Atlantic Treaty towards Turkey;
  • recalls the provisions of Article 1 of the North Atlantic Treaty, and in particular the undertaking of Allies to refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force in any manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations;
  • notes the actions taken by Allies to support Turkey;
  • agrees that, as a consequence of the Turkish request, the NATO Military Authorities should provide military advice to the DPC on the feasibility, implications and timelines of the following possible missions:
    1. preventive deployment to Turkey of NATO AWACs and supporting logistics, under SACEUR command, for defensive purposes, as required for surveillance, early warning and maintaining the integrity of Turkish airspace;
    2. NATO support for possible deployment by Allies of theatre missile defences to Turkey and their incorporation into the NATO Integrated Extended Air Defence System;
    3. NATO support for possible deployment by Allies of chemical and biological defence capabilities to Turkey;
  • agrees that, as a further consequence of the Turkish request:

    1. SACEUR is authorised to liaise directly with national military authorities with respect to these possible defensive missions;
    2. the NMAs should review contingency plans related to the reinforcement of Turkey in the context of the current situation, update the plans as needed, and report to the Council.

Our Heads of State and Government at Prague pledged our full support for the implementation of UNSCR 1441, and this decision to approve the planning of protection measures for Turkey is fully consistent with the deliberations and efforts in the United Nations.

We continue to support efforts in the United Nations to find a peaceful solution to the crisis. This decision relates only to the defence of Turkey, and is without prejudice to any other military operations by NATO, and future decisions by NATO or the UN Security Council.

The DPC will decide on the implementation of the defensive measures as a matter of urgency; will continue to consult in the context of the Turkish request under Article 4; and will continue to follow closely discussion in the UN Security Council and the implementation of UNSCR 1441.

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