Updated: 19-Dec-2001 NATO Speeches

19 Dec. 2001


by Boris Zmejkovski,
Deputy Minister of Defence of the Republic of Macedonia
at the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council
in Defence Ministers session

Mr Secretary General,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

At the beginning, I would like to greet all the attendees and to welcome the coordinated and successful approach of the international community, primarily of NATO regarding the crisis events in the Republic of Macedonia,

Although, a progress has been achieved regarding the preservation of peace and stability in the world, there are still some major threats left which do not occur separately but are of complex nature and most frequently unpredictable. Those threats are being manifested in various forms such as terrorism, armed extremism and other unconventional threats to security.

The cooperation regarding the fight against international terrorism was attached the due attention with regard to the increased PfP activities in this area.

Dealing with the crisis in the Republic of Macedonia has shown that the status of a PfP member country by using of various mechanisms, both consultative and practical cooperation mechanisms, contributes to the enhancement of interoperability for joint tasks performance.

Learning from our own experiences, I would like to stress that it is necessary:

  • to jointly develop the operational plans and to have procedures and mechanisms for rapid acceptance and implementation of the required changes of the plans,
  • to have participation of the police force, as one of the key factors for dealing with terrorism and armed extremism as well as with other unconventional security threats;
  • to make a maximum use of the current security procedures and mechanisms that have been established for classified information exchange,
  • to have procedures and a mechanism for early warning and risk and threat management;

Based upon the lessons learned, the Republic of Macedonia, within the NATO SEEI, is prepared to take the leading role with regard to the development of the document for political, military and other type of early warning, conflict prevention and crisis management

In the 21st century, no country can deal with the problems it is faced with on its own. Partnership and solidarity, based upon common values are essential within the Euro -Atlantic community. The redefinition of the role of the international and regional organizations and integrations has already started and they have been adjusted to the new strategic surrounding.

The specific character of the regions should be respected and developed, improving the ways of dealing with the current and possible future security threats as a primary purpose. We believe that the establishment of a Regional Conflict and Crisis Prevention Center seated in the Republic of Macedonia would be the fastest way to improve the practical measures.

Distinguished ladies and gentlemen,

Allow me to once again reiterate the ultimate solidarity of the Republic of Macedonia with the people and the Government of the USA regarding the tragic events of September 11. My country has joined the international anti - terrorist coalition by undertaking concrete measures as a contribution within the global efforts against terrorist activities.

As you ail know, in the course of this year, the Republic of Macedonia was attacked by forces, which were hostile to democracy and stability using terrorism and violence for accomplishment of their criminal goals under the "fight for human rights" umbrella.

It has to be very clear that the various positions regarding the acts of terrorism could undermine our joint fight. There are no small and large acts of terrorism; acts, which are tolerable or acts that are not tolerable. We have to defend the democratic values, human rights and rule of law more determinedly and more decisively than ever. We cannot allow manipulation of the social, economic, religious and political differences to be used for justification of terrorism. The precise identification of terrorism in this region is especially significant for us and for the peace on the Balkans and in Europe.

In order to have the main NATO goal implemented such as the peace and stability preservation as well as the non-changeability of borders in the SEE region, it is very important that the international community sends out clear signals to all those who produce, support or in any way assist the creation of such intent that could lead to a crisis, that it would not tolerate such conduct.

I believe that, we should jointly discourage the disintegrating forces, terrorist organizations and criminal groups in their intentions for easily getting rich and for their revival of anachronistic ideas for great states and nations. The noble notion of Europe as "whole and free" represents the most precise response to the question, as to why it is necessary no part of Europe is excluded from the further enlargement of the Alliance and that all aspirant countries from SEE, including the Republic of Macedonia should be invited in the next enlargement round.

Thank you.

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