Updated: 14-Oct-2005 NATO Speeches


12 Oct. 2005

Press point

with NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer
and Javier Solana, High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy


Audio of the press point

JAVIER SOLANA (High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy): ... meeting of NAC and the COPS, the European Union and NATO was very fulfilled, very successful on evaluation of the situation in Bosnia-Herzegovina as the main point of our discussion. As you know, the last period of time in the last days, important and positive decisions have been taken in Bosnia-Herzegovina in particular on the restructuring of the police.

As you know, that has been without it for a certain period of time. At the end of the day, a solution had to be found that would allow from the point of view of the European Union at least to have the possibility of a ressusciation of an association, negotiation with Bosnia-Herzegovina. So that's good news. Good news for all of us. Good news for Bosnia-Herzegovina and good news for the people and good news also for the restructuring of the Bosnia-Herzegovina state. I'm sure that the Secretary-General of NATO will talk about a reform on defence. Let me state that a broadcasting law has been already passed. And that is another important thing in the motion of Bosnia-Herzegovina in the construction of a solid state.

Now as far as EUFOR is concerned, let me say, first, that a cooperation between EUFOR and NATO headquarters in Sarajevo continues to be perfect. And we have checked today, with all the arrangement, everything goes okay, everything is fine.

We will have a revision of the...(inaudible) Monday to the EUFOR and the size of EUFOR and lessons learned from the EUFOR probably before the end of the year, no doubt about that. We're going to have an informal meeting of ministers of Defence this week in which we'll have for dinner General Leakey which the Commander of the operation. And we'll have a further discussion about how to continue after this period of time.

I think these are the most important things to my mind are worth passing to you today. And... but again I insist that we've had a very good meeting. We had a meeting between the European Union and NATO , very operational, very rapid, very systematic. We are very pleased to call things are going in this operation which is very important for NATO , very important for the European Union. So Jaap, do you want to....?

JAAP DE HOOP SCHEFFER ( NATO 's Secretary General): Javier, thank you, I can echo the High Representative's words: a) It was a good meeting; b) I think if we discuss and see developments in Bosnia-Herzegovina the signs are reasons for optimism. Javier Solana already mentioned the police-defence reform is a positive story as well.

Implementation, of course, is very important here. We'll now have to see implementation. So I think if you take police reform, European Union , if you take defence reform, things are moving in the right direction. The point I made specifically in the meeting also is the cooperation with the ICTY in The Hague , the fact that the ICTY has shown that it also has confidence in local jurisdiction on certain (inaudible). I mean the good news stories is, of course, not complete and is never complete in that region without the big fish: Karadjic and Mladic being handed over to a place where they should be which is in The Hague.

Here, we have of course our wishes. But I think if we look at Bosnia Herzegovina, we look at defence reform, police, it is going in the right direction. It is, of course, of great importance that most specifically that the Republic of Srpska cooperates fully.

Let me mention one other point I have raised by way of information on any other business, I have called a special meeting of the North Atlantic Council at one this afternoon to see if and how NATO as an Alliance can contribute to the enormous and immense disaster which happened a few days ago in Pakistan and India . So we'll see what we can do. There's already.... We have two... two ways to go here. NATO , of course, has its operation in Afghanistan which is close to this horrific theater with the number of casulties increasing and increasing.

So we'll see this afternoon what kind of a decision we can take and what kind of military advice we can get. And I want to have that, as soon as possible, by the end of today. Because every hour is one to see if and how NATO can make a contribution to alleviate some of the immense needs this disaster has caused. That is what I have to tell you.

SOLANA: Thank you very much, I have not mentionned the question of earthquake. As you know, the MIC of the European Union was activated immediately. And the coordination was being done with the presence of the British. We have people on the ground already. Several countries, most countries of the European Union have already envoyed or sent material which is for trying to cope with the dramatic situation on the ground. The ECO has already deployed 3.6 million euros. So the European Union is also doing as much as possible to try to help this dramatic catastrophe.

Q: Colin from the Associated Press. Secretary General, can you tell us what steps will be needed, what procedural steps will be needed to change the ISAF mandate, so that it will be able to send troops to Pakistan to help with the earthquake? And can you... and how many heavy lift helicopters that ISAF have which could be useful in this operation?

SCHEFFER: Well, formally, it doesn't need a change of mandate. As you might know, Germany in consultation with the Commander of ISAF has already, over the past 24-48 hours, dispatched some of its forces to...into theater. We have of course, as I said, the possibility to do it through ISAF. The ISAF operation, of course, will continue running as well. But we have other possibilities as well. This is what we're going to discuss. This is what the military authorities are now discussing. What I expect, as I said, is military advice at the close of business today on what more could be done. This, of course, a clear relationship with ISAF. But there's also more NATO could do. I mean not only in the military's sphere. We have, as you know, the EADRCC which is also... which is also activated, of course, in this respect. But this is a situation, as we're facing it now, every hour is won. We cannot afford to lose time.

Q: I have a question for Bosnia . First for Mister Solana. When could the Bosnia Herzegovina hope to launch the SAA talks. And to Mister Secretary General, when could Bosnia hope to be a member of PFP and what assurance they do in order to achieve that goal?

SOLANA: Let me answer the first part of your question. The situation is really to a start. And I think they will be as soon as possible.

SCHEFFER: And on the second part of your question, I can answer unfortunately rather simply and that is... as I mentioned already during my brief statement that there is something which has to be... somebody rather which have to be delivered. I mean I would like Bosnia Herzegovina in PFP tomorrow but they know very well that NATO has applied conditions to this.

Q: ISAT (?), chaîne de télévision albanaise. Monsieur Solana, la semaine passée, il y a une déclaration de la part de Monsieur Kofi Annan pour lancement des pourparlers pour l'avenir politique du Kosovo. Quel est votre déclaration sur cela? Et la deuxième, est-ce que vous êtes prêt de dire le nom de la personne qui va diriger ces pourparlers au nom de l'Union européenne? Merci.

SOLANA: Deux questions, deux réponses. Je commence sur la deuxième, sur la plus ample, je ne suis pas en position de dire le nom qu'il y a... c'est une décision à prendre par la Sécurité générale des Nations-Unies, pas pour moi. Donc, me taire, c'est probablement la manière la plus polie de répondre à vos questions.

Sur la première partie, oui, que vous avez le rapport de Monsieur Eide a été déjà présenté au Secrétaire Général. Il aura le 23 d'octobre la réunion avec le Conseil de sécurité. Après ce moment-là, comme le Secrétaire Général vient de dire sera le moment de commencer s'il y a un accord au sein du Conseil de sécurité des Nations Unies de commencer d'abord à nommer l'équipe pour la personne qui va être responsable et après commencer à travailler. Et donc, c'est la situation. Le 23 sera la réunion formelle entre Monsieur Eide qui était le responsable du premier rapport et les membres du Conseil de sécurité des Nations Unies.

Q: Katerina Krohl (?), (inaudible) I have a question to both. In this morning, the Germans' two big parties decided that Angela Merkel will be the next Chancellor. What do you expect from a new German government in this situation now?

SOLANA: The first thing I have to say is to congratulate her if that is the final decision. I now her very well. I've been in several occasions with her in this long period of time, and we have met... since we have met for the first time in years... And I wish her all the best and I wish all the best to the new government and all the best to the people of Germany .


SOLANA: I said the same, but he said it longer.

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