Secretary General at International Conference on Iraq
- Thank you Dr. Rice and Dr. Solana. Our meeting here today shows
that we are focused on a common vision: that of a peaceful, prosperous,
and democratic Iraq.
- Increased security and functioning institutions are critical to
achieving this objective. Iraq now has a democratically-elected parliament
and government that wants to work with all friends of Iraq to bring
peace and stability. In this new phase, there is no reason for any
country not to make a significant contribution to this effort, and
compelling reasons why all of us should do so.
- The North Atlantic Treaty organization and its member states are
committed to fully implementing its Istanbul Summit decision, to help
the government of Iraq train and equip its security forces.
- The NATO Training Implementation Mission (NTM-I) is training and
mentoring leadership personnel from the Iraqi security establishments
inside Iraq and has focused in particular on the development of Headquarters
structures, and related staff and communication skills.
- NATO and its member states have also offered training outside of
Iraq. Since last autumn, over 100 carefully selected personnel have
been trained at NATO establishments outside Iraq. NATO nations have
also offered over 250 slots for individual national training through
the end of the year. We plan to increase the numbers substantially
- The NATO mission complements the efforts of the Multi National Force
and individual nations. We work closely with the Iraqi Ministries of
Defense and Interior. We are determined to reach our goal of training
roughly 1,000 Iraqi personnel per year.
- An important next step for NATO will be the establishment this coming
September of the Training and Education Doctrine Center at Ar Rustimaya
in the outskirts of Baghdad. This center will have state of the art
facilities that will allow training and classroom activities to be
concentrated in one place. We would welcome discussions with other
nations and institutions that are considering conducting training in
Iraq regarding the possible use of this Center.
- NATO also plays an important role in coordinating offers of equipment
and training to the Iraqi forces from individual NATO and other countries.
I would encourage all those who are interested in providing training
or equipment to consider coordinating those offers through the existing
NATO Training and Equipment Coordination Group. Contact information
has been included in the NATO fact sheet that has been distributed
- The NATO Training Mission is supported through the Alliance’s commonly
funded military budget and investment programme. We have also established
a special trust fund to support the travel and subsistence of Iraqi
Security Forces training outside Iraq, and to support the running of
Ar Rustimaya . And we are planning to expand the use of this trust
fund to cover the transportation of donated equipment
- I would like to use this opportunity to make a strong appeal for
additional donors and for additional contributions to this trust fund.
Over the past year, the Alliance has shown that it is able to make
an effective contribution in areas that are critical to Iraq’s long-term
security and stability. And any contributions to the trust fund will
be money well spent.
- Ladies and Gentlemen. The guiding principle of NATO’s mission in
Iraq has been simple: the Iraqi Government makes the decisions. We
are there to advise and to assist. And we will continue to coordinate
closely with the Iraqi government and to harmonize our efforts with
the government’s needs and priorities.
- Clearly, much work remains to be done. What is needed now is tenacity
and continuity in helping our Iraqi friends to consolidate and build
upon what has been achieved. NATO will continue to play its part in
this collective effort, and I invite our friends and Partners to join