Updated: 23-Aug-2001 1992

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Summary 1992


From 1992 on, intensive contacts and exchanges take place between NATO countries and the newly independent countries of Eastern Europe and independent republics which were formally part of the Soviet Union. A Work Plan for Dialogue, Partnership and Cooperation is drawn up. Cooperation is already up and running in a number of essential practical fields such as the coordination of arrangements for civil and military air traffic control.

On the wider stage, these countries become members of the Conference for European Security and Cooperation (CSCE - later to become an organisation and to be renamed the OSCE) and of the United Nations. Different forms of regional security cooperation are established, for example in the Baltic and in the Black Sea areas.

As 1992 progresses, the conflict in the former Yugoslavia continues to dominate the international agenda. A significant development in NATO policy is announced by Foreign Ministers when the NATO Council meets at Ministerial level in Oslo in June. Under appropriate conditions, NATO will provide assistance for peacekeeping activities undertaken under the responsibility of the CSCE. Soon after, the NATO Council extends its offer of support for peacekeeping activities to the United Nations.

In another development which will take on greater significance later on, the Western European Union (WEU) establishes a list of humanitarian and peacekeeping tasks (the Petersberg Missions) on which it will focus future efforts. The WEU and NATO cooperate in monitoring compliance with UN Resolutions designed to limit the conflict in the former Yugoslavia by checking all shipping in the Adriatic which might be carrying arms.

In a short space of time, a number of further actions are undertaken by NATO to implement decisions of the UN Security Council relating to the Yugoslav conflict.

Escalation of the Yugoslav conflict leads to enforcement measures by NATO and WEU naval forces in the Adriatic towards the end of 1992. Requests from the UN Secretary General give rise to military planning for similar measures by NATO to enforce a no-fly zone and to provide other forms of protection from the air.

By August 1993 air strikes are planned by NATO in order to prevent further human suffering in Bosnia and to stop the strangulation of cities like Sarajevo. But another three years will pass before a peace agreement is reached and the NATO-led Implementation Force (IFOR) takes over the command of military operations in Bosnia from the United Nations. Before this occurs, NATO finds itself taking on increasing responsibility for ending the conflict and for imposing military measures to support the efforts of the UN.