1. The Defence Planning Committee and Nuclear Planning Group of the North
Atlantic Treaty Organization met in Ministerial Session in Brussels on 8
2. Defence planning underpins the Alliance's political cohesion and the
transatlantic link. It is at the core of NATO's work to ensure that the
Alliance collectively has the military capabilities it needs to prepare for
and carry out its full range of missions from collective defence to crisis
response and peace support operations. Our collective defence planning
process makes a vital contribution to the achievement of the key capability
improvements set out in the Defence Capabilities Initiative, which was
launched by our Heads of State and Government at last year's Washington
Summit. Today we adopted a new set of NATO Force Goals covering the period
to 2006. We shall ensure that a high priority is given to them in our
national force plans, and that resources are allocated as necessary.
3. We welcomed the full participation of the Czech Republic, Hungary and
Poland in this Force Goals cycle as members of the Alliance.
4. Force Goals 2000 address the essential requirements needed to ensure
that the Alliance's military forces are well manned, equipped and trained
to deal with the security challenges that may confront them. They take
account of lessons learned in NATO operations in the Balkans, particularly
in relation to Kosovo. They also continue to address requirements for the
support of possible WEU-led operations. We remain ready to define and
adopt, as set out at the Washington Summit, necessary arrangements to adapt
NATO's defence planning system further to incorporate in future the
availability of forces for EU-led operations.
5. Force Goals 2000 also take account of the key capability improvements
sought in the DCI and, where appropriate, have been linked to these. For
the nations that participate in Alliance collective defence planning,
implementation of these Force Goals will be an essential step in putting
DCI into practice. We welcome the increased attention that DCI has
focussed on the collective defence planning process and the added momentum
it has provided; we accept the challenge to show significant progress in
this field in the Annual Defence Review.
6. At our next meeting in December we will take stock of progress in
implementing Force Goals; we will approve a new Ministerial Guidance, on
which we exchanged views today; and we shall also take stock of progress in
the NATO force structure review.
7. At our Nuclear Planning Group meeting, we reviewed the status of NATO's
nuclear forces and a number of related activities. We are satisfied that
NATO's reduced nuclear force posture fully complies with the Alliance's
Strategic Concept. NATO's nuclear forces are a credible and effective
element of the Allies' strategy of preventing war, and they are maintained
at the minimum level sufficient to preserve peace and stability. We are
assured that the Allies' nuclear weapons and their storage continue to meet
the highest standards of safety and security.
8. We welcome the positive outcome of the recent Review Conference on the
Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and affirm our
commitments made at the Conference. NATO Allies are also committed to the
immediate commencement and the rapid conclusion of negotiations on a
non-discriminatory, multilateral and internationally and effectively
verifiable and universal Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty.
9. We welcome the ratification of the START II Treaty and the Comprehensive
Test Ban Treaty by Russia. Both are important steps towards even deeper
reductions and, ultimately, the elimination of nuclear weapons on a global
scale. We look forward to the implementation of START II and assure the
United States and the Russian Federation of our full support for their
negotiations on the basis of an agreed START III framework which would cut
the arsenals of deployed strategic nuclear warheads by 80 per cent from
Cold War peaks. We renew our call upon Russia to bring to completion the
reductions in its tactical nuclear weapons announced in 1991 and 1992, and
to review further its much larger tactical nuclear weapons stockpile with a
view towards making additional significant reductions.
10. We received a report on ongoing activities in support of broader work
in the Alliance regarding options for confidence and security building
measures, verification, non-proliferation and arms control and disarmament.
11. We welcome the prospects for renewed exchanges between NATO and the
Russian Federation on a range of nuclear weapons issues, under the auspices
of the NATO-Russia Permanent Joint Council.