|Updated: 05-Dec-2002||November 2002|
NATO to continue supporting
In response to a request by Skopje, the Alliance has decided to continue supporting the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia with a new peacekeeping mission from 16 December 2002.
The North Atlantic Council, the Alliance’s top decision-making body, agreed on 29 November that NATO’s current mission, Amber Fox, can be successfully terminated when its mandate expires on 15 December, but that there is a requirement for a follow-on international military presence in the country after that date.
The new operation will be significantly smaller in numbers than Amber Fox. Its mission will be two-fold: continued support for the international monitors and assistance to the government in taking ownership of security throughout the country. The modalities of this continued presence will be reviewed in February 2003.
NATO first sent troops to the in August 2001 to disarm ethnic Albanian groups and to destroy their weapons. Following the success of this mission, Operation Amber Fox was established to protect the international monitors overseeing the implementation of the peace plan in the country.