Updated: 13-Sep-2001 Week of 8-14 March 2000

8 Mar. 2000
Finalisation of the Brcko District arbitration

"The mother of all difficulties" becomes "the mother of all hope", Robert Farrand the special superviser of Brcko stated during the launching ceremony of the Brcko District on 8 March.

The strategically situated district of Brcko, which has been contested by all parties in Bosnia and Herzegovina since the end of the war, has now become a special multi-ethnic district after a long process of independent arbitration and implementation. The district is not under the authority of either of the Entities - Republica Srpska and the Federation- but has an independent status within Bosnia and Herzegovina with its own autonomous, multiethnic elected government, executive board, judiciary and police force. It has also been successfully de-militarised.

8 Mar. 2000
Eurocorps prepares for KFOR command take-over

Eurocorps has sent an advanced team to Pristina, the capital of Kosovo, in preparation for its take-over of the command of KFOR mid-April. The Commander of Eurocorps, General Juan Ortuno of Spain, is expected to arrive in Kosovo early April while personnel will gradually take up their positions and responsibilities ready for the official change of command mid-April.

Eurocorps is composed of five nations: Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg and Spain. It will take over from LANDCENT forces.

8 Mar. 2000
Statement by NATO Secretary General, Lord Robertson, following North Atlantic Council Meeting, condemning further violence in Mitrovica.
9 Mar. 2000
Lord Robertson in Turkey
Continuing his first tour of NATO member countries since his nomination as NATO Secretary General in October 1999, Lord Robertson travelled to Turkey on 9 March. He met with government officials including Prime Minister Bülent Ecevit, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ismail Cem and Minister of Defence Sabahattin Çakmakoglu.
10 Mar. 2000
Albright's visit to NATO HQ
After her visit to the Czech Republic and to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright came to NATO HQ on 10 March. She met with Lord Robertson to discuss issues including Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, relations with Russia and European defence plans.

12 Mar. 2000
First anniversary of membership
The Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland have now been members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation for one year. On 12 March 1999, they officially became NATO members after a ceremony at the Truman Library, Independence, Missouri (USA) and a flag-raising ceremony took place at NATO HQ, Brussels on 16 March.
13 Mar. 2000
Lord Robertson in Sarajevo
On 13 March, Lord Robertson made his second visit to the Bosnian capital, Sarajevo, since his nomination as NATO Secretary General in October 1999. During his one-day visit, he met with several international officials among whom were the Commander of SFOR, General Ronald Adams, and the High Representative for Coordinating the Civilian Organisations and Agencies in Bosnia, Ambassador Wolfgang Petritsch. He also met with Bosnia and Herzgovina's Tri-Presidency and opposition leaders and took the opportunity to urge voters to keep away from extremism in next month's municipal elections to be held on 8 April.

Lord Robertson stated that NATO remains committed to its peacekeeping mission and will pursue its arrest of war crimes suspects. He also gave confirmation that the multi-ethnic presidency will continue to reduce the country's armed forces.

14 Mar. 2000
Spring School Conference in St. Petersburg
"Values of Humanity and Regional Conflicts" were discussed at the Spring School held in St. Petersburg from 14-22 March. Organised by the Center for Integration Research and Programs and co-sponsored by NATO, this event brought together academics and experts from NATO countries and Russia. They discussed Chechnya and Kosovo in the context of developments in international relations and international law, peacekeeping, public opinion and the role of the media.
14 Mar. 2000
Algeria joins NATO's Mediterranean Dialogue
This week, the Algerian Democratic and Popular Republic became the seventh participant in NATO's Mediterranean Dialogue.

Created in 1994, the Mediterranean Dialogue aims at enhancing security and stability in the region by creating good relations across the Mediterranean as well as better mutual understanding. The other six members are Egypt, Israel, Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia, which joined in February 1995, and Jordan, which joined in November 1995.