News

04 December 1997

TEXT: NATO STATEMENT ON NATO-RUSSIAN PERMANENT JOINT COUNCIL

(Discusses December 3 meeting) (550)



Brussels -- NATO Headquarters issued a press summary on the first
NATO-Russia Permanent Joint Council (PJC) meeting of defense ministers
December 3, noting that topics discussed at the meeting included
developments in Bosnia-Herzegovina and the upcoming Peace
Implementation Council meeting in Bonn, and progress in developing
Russia's Individual Partnership Program in the Partnership for Peace.


"They welcomed the arrival of Russia's Military Representative in
Brussels and the beginning of regular meetings between NATO and
Russian military representatives, which will now be occurring monthly
in the framework of the PJC," the press summary said.


The defense ministers outlined prospective cooperation between the
military structures of NATO and Russia aimed at strengthening peace
and stability in the Euro-Atlantic region, and exchanged views on
measures for promoting transparency and confidence between NATO and
Russia.


Following is the text of the NATO press summary:



(Begin text)



NATO-RUSSIA PERMANENT JOINT COUNCIL MEETING AT DEFENSE MINISTERS LEVEL
BRUSSELS, 3 DECEMBER 1997



Press Summary



The NATO-Russia Permanent Joint Council met at the level of Defense
Ministers on Wednesday 3rd December 1997 in Brussels. At this, their
first meeting following the signing of the NATO-Russia Founding Act,
Ministers pledged themselves to playing their full part in bringing
concrete substance to the historic commitment, entered into at the
highest political level, to build a lasting and inclusive peace in the
Euro-Atlantic area.


Ministers reviewed developments in Bosnia-Herzegovina. They looked
forward to the forthcoming Peace Implementation Council in Bonn on
9-10 December, and expressed their great satisfaction at SFOR's
success in ensuring the secure environment necessary for the full
implementation of the Peace Accords.


They welcomed the close working relations that have been developed
between NATO and Russia for the implementation of the military aspects
of the Peace Accords. They agreed to draw on the practical experience
gained from Bosnia in pursuing their commitment to consultation and
cooperation in the field of crisis management and conflict prevention
and resolution.


Ministers expressed their satisfaction at steps taken to implement the
1997 work program, including the beginning of practical work in the
newly established joint working groups on peacekeeping and civil
emergency planning and disaster relief. They noted progress in
developing Russia's Individual Partnership Program (IPP) in PFP
[Partnership for Peace].


The Defense Ministers discussed and outlined the prospective
directions of cooperation between the military structures of NATO and
Russia aimed at strengthening peace and stability in the Euro-Atlantic
region.


Ministers exchanged views on measures which could be taken to promote
transparency and confidence between NATO and Russia, and on other
topics of mutual interest in the field of NATO-Russia cooperation.


They welcomed the arrival of Russia's Military Representative in
Brussels and the beginning of regular meetings between NATO and
Russian military representatives, which will now be occurring monthly
in the framework of the PJC. They looked forward to the first PJC
meeting tomorrow in Chiefs of Defense Staff session.


The Defense Ministers of NATO and the Russian Federation welcomed the
substantive character of the discussions today and expressed their
commitment to a strong and enduring partnership and to strengthening
mutual trust and cooperation.


(End text)