Updated: 22-Nov-2001 Week of 20-26 September 2000

20 Sep. 2000
Infrastructure discussed at NATO-Russia meeting
During the first NATO-Russia Permanent Joint Council meeting after the summer break, the Russian representatives gave a briefing on issues related to military infrastructure in their country. Other questions raised at the meeting were the setting up of a NATO Information Centre in Moscow, terrorism and anti-ballistic missiles. In the context of the recent elections in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, the political situation in the country was also discussed.

21 Sep. 2000
The Alliance's future challenges
NATO Secretary General, Lord Robertson, NATO Ambassadors, senior NATO officials and acknowledged high-level experts from governments and leading research institutes met in Berlin on 21-22 September to discuss the future challenges facing the Alliance.
This year's NATO Review Conference focused on growing relations between NATO and the European Union, the way ahead in the Balkans in the wake of elections in Yugoslavia, NATO-Russia relations, the future of NATO's enlargement process and the impact on the Alliance of US plans for a National Missile Defense. Although proceedings are not made public, the views expressed at this conference are a valuable contribution to the Alliance's policy planning.

The NATO Review Conference was initiated in 1989 by Manfred Wörner while he was NATO Secretary General (1988 to 1994) and has since been held once a year. It is organised by the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP), which is a government sponsored think-tank specialised in security issues, international relations and regional studies.

25 Sep. 2000
Transcarpathia 2000

A Disaster Relief Exercise - Transcarpathia 2000 - simulating major flooding, is conducted in Western Ukraine in the framework of Partnership for Peace and the NATO-Ukraine Work Plan. Three hundred and fifty personnel from disaster response elements of 11 EAPC countries participate.

Additional information:

25 Sep. 2000
Georgia and security throughout Eurasia

On 25-26 September, Lord Robertson travelled to the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, where he met with President Eduard Shevardnadze (see photo) and several government ministers. He also addressed a conference on the "Caucasus Today: Perspectives of Regional Cooperation and Partnership with NATO". In his speech, Lord Robertson underlined the importance of partnership and practical cooperation between NATO and NATO partners, stating that a new security culture had now developed throughout Eurasia.

Georgia was one of the first countries to join Partnership for Peace in 1994 and has become a particularly active member over the last few years.

Additional information:

25 Sep. 2000
Workshop on Mineral Resource Management

A NATO Advanced Research Workshop is taking place from 25 September to 1 October in Portoroz, Slovenia, to review Sustainable Mineral Resource Management in Karst areas. Funded by NATO and organised by the US Department of Agriculture and the Geological Survey of Slovenia, the workshop is bringing together experts from 22 countries to identify gaps in knowledge and determine how science can support sustainable resources management in karst areas.

Karst areas are irregular limestone regions with sinks, underground streams and caverns, which are important sources of both minerals and water. In many countries in Western, Central and Eastern Europe the character and functioning of karst systems are being altered and degraded by quarrying and ground water removals. To date it has been difficult to identify appropriate and publicly acceptable resources management policies, because of the multi-disciplinary nature of the problem. It is widely agreed that the model for land and resource management in the future will be sustainable development. Sustainable development entails satisfying human needs, improving the quality of life, protecting natural resources and enhancing the human, natural and physical capital. This NATO workshop will investigate the applicability of sustainable development principles to mineral resource management in karst areas.

25 Sep. 2000
Environmental problems of Kyrgyz lake

A workshop supported by the NATO Science Programme took place last week on the topic of the Issyk-Kul Lake: Evaluation of the Environmental State and its Remediation. Lake Issyk-Kul, located in the Tien Shan of the Kyrgyz Republic, is a large, closed, high-altitude lake. It is affected by environmental threats resulting from former or present industrial activities and uncontrolled agriculture, and moreover is located in a tectonically highly active region.

More than 40 participants from 14 countries met in Cholpon-Ata, Kyrgyz Republic from 25 to 28 September. The participants were scientists from different disciplines already involved or acquainted with the investigation of the environmental problems of Lake Issyk-Kul or experienced in the study of similar problems in other parts of the world.

The aim was to make a multidisciplinary evaluation of the present state of knowledge on Lake Issyk-Kul, with particular emphasis on the environmental aspects; to define and evaluate the environmental threats affecting the lake and its catchment area at present; to identify essential gaps in the current knowledge about the Lake and establish a strategy for further investigation of the environmental problems concerning the lake basin. An additional objective was to propose plans for future actions to the Kyrgyz authorities. The workshop was organised by experts from the National Academy of Sciences of the Kyrgyz Republic, and the International Bureau for Environmental Studies, Brussels.

25 Sep. 2000
Conference on security in Northern Europe
A high level conference was organised in Riga, Latvia, on 25 September on the impact of both NATO and EU enlargement and moves toward a European defence capability on the security architecture of Northern Europe. The event was organised by the Latvian Institute of International Affairs, NATO, the Latvian Ministry of Defence and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation. Perspectives on the issue were presented by NATO, Latvia, Sweden, Poland, Denmark, the Czech Republic, Finland, Hungary, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States.