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NATO Washington Summits - USIA

Fact Sheet: NATO on Defense Capabilities Initiative

24 April 1999

This Fact Sheet was released by NATO at the Washington Summit on April 24.

NATO Summit: Defense Capabilities Initiative

The Defense Capabilities Initiative (DCI) is an effort to ensure that the Alliance has conventional military forces that are designed and equipped for 21st century missions. At the Washington Summit, NATO's 19 leaders adopted a "Common operational vision" for NATO militaries; endorsed a report that examined changing Allied conventional military needs and identified key shortfalls; and launched a program to develop Allied defense capabilities in five key areas. The areas identified for focus are:

-- Effective engagement: the ability to engage effectively with appropriate assets in a number of different areas, including humanitarian assistance, force protection, and high-intensity combat;

-- Deployability and mobility: the ability to move forces efficiently and effectively;

-- Sustainability and logistics: the ability to sustain engagements by delivering supplies and support equipment in a timely, organized manner, supporting prolonged operations through rotation of forces;

-- Survivability: the ability to survive and operate in a wide range of environments, including chemical, biological, terrorist, or electronic attacks;

-- Command, Control and Communications: the ability to establish and maintain effective command and control arrangements and communications links, interoperable with national systems and including a deployable capability for crisis response operations.

To ensure effective implementation of the DCI, NATO's leaders established a High-Level Steering Group (HLSG) to coordinate, prioritize, and integrate the efforts of the appropriate NATO committees.

(end NATO Summit Fact Sheet)

(For more information on this subject, access the NATO 50th website: nato50.gov)