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Press Release (97)146
24. Nov 1997


NATO-Russia statement on the 24 November Permanent Joint Council meeting at Ambassadorial level

The fourth meeting of the NATO-Russia Permanent Joint Council (PJC) at Ambassadorial level took place on Monday, 24 November 1997 at NATO Headquarters.

Building upon the first Ministerial meeting of the PJC in New York and work currently under way in the PJC politico-military working group on peacekeeping, the representatives of NATO and Russia exchanged views on peacekeeping operations.

Ambassadors had an exchange of views on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the wake of the Assembly elections in the Republika Srpska and discussed NATO-Russia cooperation in SFOR.

NATO and Russia stressed the importance of political and defence efforts against proliferation of nuclear, chemical or biological weapons and their delivery means. Ambassadors welcomed Russia's recent decision to ratify the Chemical Weapons Convention and agreed to continue to discuss proliferation issues next year.

Ambassadors reviewed the implementation of the work programme for the Permanent Joint Council until the end of 1997, which had been approved at the first Ministerial meeting of the PJC on 26 September 1997 in New York. They focused on ongoing work with regard to civil emergency planning and the progress on updating Russia's Individual Partnership Programme. NATO
and Russia also exchanged initial views on the PJC work programme for 1998 which will be approved by Ministers in December.

Ambassadors underscored the need to increase defence-related and military cooperation. They stressed the importance of the inaugural meeting of military representatives under the auspices of the PJC on 27 November 1997.

The next meeting of the Permanent Joint Council is scheduled for 12 December 1997.