Common Declaration of the Defence Ministers of the
Enhanced Forward Presence Host and Framework Nations on the
Implementation of Enhanced Forward Presence
- We, the Defence Ministers of the enhanced Forward Presence host and framework nations, have reviewed our progress in implementing the enhanced Forward Presence in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland.
- The decision taken by our Heads of State and Government at the Warsaw Summit to enhance NATO’s deterrence and defence posture, including by a forward presence in the eastern part of the Alliance on a voluntary, sustainable, and rotational basis, is a direct response to Russia’s aggressive actions, including provocative military activities in the periphery of NATO territory, which have reduced stability and security, increased unpredictability, and changed the security environment.
- As part of a broader effort to strengthen NATO’s deterrence and defence posture, the enhanced Forward Presence is a clear and unambiguous demonstration of Allied solidarity, determination, and ability to defend NATO’s population and territory against any aggression. NATO stands as one.
- Today, we declare that the four highly capable, flexible and interoperable multinational battlegroups are ready and able to deter and, if necessary, immediately respond to any aggression in concert with national forces underpinned by a viable reinforcement strategy.
- We also welcome the activation of the Multinational Division North-East Headquarters in Elbląg as a NATO Military Body. This marks an important step towards implementing the Warsaw Summit decisions. It will strengthen NATO’s effectiveness in undertaking collective defence tasks on the Eastern Flank.
- As part of the Alliance posture, these measures are defensive in nature, proportionate, consistent with our international commitments, and demonstrate our respect for the rules-based European security architecture. Our aim is to prevent conflict, protect our Allies, and preserve peace and security in the Euro-Atlantic region.
- As a means to prevent conflict and war, credible deterrence and defence is essential. At the same time, as part of the Alliance’s overall approach to providing security for NATO populations and territory, deterrence has to be complemented by meaningful dialogue and engagement with Russia, to seek reciprocal transparency and risk reduction. Those efforts will not come at the expense of ensuring NATO’s credible deterrence and defence.
The Defence Ministers
of the enhanced Forward Presence host and framework nations
Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, the United States, Germany, Canada and the United Kingdom
Signed at NATO Headquarters Brussels on 29 June 2017