Updated: 30-Jul-2003 July 2003

23 July 2003

NATO-Russia Council calls for strengthened defence reform in Bosnia

NATO-Russia cooperation
NATO-Russia Council Statement
Press Statement by NATO Secretary General, Lord Robertson, in his Capacity as Chairman of the NATO-Russia Council
Russia and NATO member countries have jointly called on the Bosnian authorities to take responsibility for their own affairs and, in particular, to strengthen efforts to reform the armed forces and to create an effective state-level, democratic, civilian command and control structure.

"These reforms are essential for normalising Bosnia and Herzegovina and building a successful, democratic and prosperous state," they agreed.

In a statement issued after the ambassadorial meeting of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC) on 23 July, which will be transmitted to the Bosnian tri-presidency by the NRC Chairman, NATO Secretary General Lord Robertson, NRC members also pointed to the need for defence allocations to be affordable and appropriate to the country's circumstances, which will require significant downsizing of the armed forces.

During the meeting, NRC ambassadors also exchanged views on the current situations in Afghanistan and Kosovo, as well as discussing progress in developing practical cooperation in the struggle against terrorism and in the area of logistics.