Updated: 22-Nov-2002 NATO Speeches


22 Nov. 2002


by Mr. Kjell Magne Bondevik, Prme Minister Norway at Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council

Mr. Secretary General,
President Havel,
Dear friends and colleagues,

Since its inception the Partnership has become an indispensable pillar in the Euro-Atlantic security architecture. It has been instrumental in our efforts to build peace and stability on the European continent. It has been paramount for our ability to face mutual challenges through joint action on the ground, such as in the fight against international terrorism.

In the past the Partnership has shown a remarkable ability to adapt to changing circumstances. This should be its hallmark also in the years to come. The future Partnership must reflect new challenges to our common security, such as terrorism and other asymmetrical threats.

At this Summit we respond to these challenges.

Yesterday's decision on enlargement provides us with new opportunities.

Today, we have taken the co-operation between NATO and Partners an important step further and given new substance to our relationship. The adapted Partnership will both deepen our existing dialogue and introduce new areas of co-operation. It will allow for more focused and tailored relationships with the Partners, both individually and in groups.

Norway welcomes the Partnership Action Plan against terrorism as one of the first concrete results of the new and adapted Partnership.

While adapting the Partnership to changing circumstances we should, however, not loose sight of the fundamentals.

The Partnership has been a success because it has had a real practical value for all of us. We need to focus on issues that fall naturally within the EAPC/PtP-framework. In this regard we need to maintain a strong link between the Partnership and the co-operation within the Alliance itself.

Norway has always been eager to cooperate closely with the partners. We have provided both financial and human resources to a number of projects in areas of vital concern such as demining, destruction of small arms and base conversion. We have taken initiatives to improve the interoperability between our capacities in civil emergency. We look forward to further explore a close cooperation with the partner countries turning our relationship into an effective instrument in meeting the new security challenges.

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