Secretary-General Lord Robertson
Statement on the North Atlantic Council Decision On Implementation Of Article 5 of the Washington Treaty following the 11 September Attacks against the United States
October 4, 2001

Following its decision to invoke Article 5 of the Washington Treaty in the wake of the 11 September attacks against the United States, the NATO Allies agreed today -- at the request of the United States -- to take eight measures, individually and collectively, to expand the options available in the campaign against terrorism. Specifically, they agreed to:
  • enhance intelligence sharing and co-operation, both bilaterally and in the appropriate NATO bodies, relating to the threats posed by terrorism and the actions to be taken against it;

  • provide, individually or collectively, as appropriate and according to their capabilities, assistance to Allies and other states which are or may be subject to increased terrorist threats as a result of their support for the campaign against terrorism;

  • take necessary measures to provide increased security for facilities of the United States and other Allies on their territory;

  • backfill selected Allied assets in NATO’s area of responsibility that are required to directly support operations against terrorism;

  • provide blanket overflight clearances for the United States and other Allies’ aircraft, in accordance with the necessary air traffic arrangements and national procedures, for military flights related to operations against terrorism;

  • provide access for the United States and other Allies to ports and airfields on the territory of NATO nations for operations against terrorism, including for refuelling, in accordance with national procedures.
The North Atlantic Council also agreed:
  • that the Alliance is ready to deploy elements of its Standing Naval Forces to the Eastern Mediterranean in order to provide a NATO presence and demonstrate resolve; and

  • that the Alliance is similarly ready to deploy elements of its NATO Airborne Early Warning force to support operations against terrorism.
Today’s collective actions operationalise Article 5 of the Washington Treaty. These measures were requested by the United States following the determination that the 11 September attack was directed from abroad.

These decisions clearly demonstrate the Allies’ resolve and commitment to support and contribute to the U.S.-led fight against terrorism.