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The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), sometimes called North Atlantic Alliance, is an international organisation for defence collaboration established in 1949, in support of the North Atlantic Treaty signed in Washington, D.C., on April 4, 1949. Nowadays NATO headquarters are located in Brussels, Belgium.

Initially there were 12 members in the NATO: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxemburg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, United Kingdom and United States and it was created as the reaction on the USSR threat to occupy Western Europe. Firstly, it was intended so that if the USSR and its allies launched an attack against any of the NATO members, it would be treated as if it was an attack on all member states. This marked a significant change for the United States, which had traditionally favoured isolationist policies. Luckily, the feared invasion of Western Europe never came.

Greece and Turkey joined the initial 12 members of the organisation in February 1952. Germany joined as West Germany in 1955.

In 1966 Charles de Gaulle removes French armed forces from NATO's integrated military command to pursue its own nuclear defence programme. All non-French NATO troops are forced to leave France. This precipitates the relocation of the NATO Headquarters from Paris, France to Brussels, Belgium by October 16, 1967. However, France remained a member of NATO, notwithstanding it withdrew from the integrated military command. While the political headquarters are located in Brussels, the military headquarters, the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), are located just south of Brussels, in the town of Mons.

Following France Greece also withdrew its forces from NATO's military command structure from 1974 to 1980 as a result of Greco-Turkish tensions following the 1974 Cyprus dispute.

In 1978 NATO countries defined two complementary aims of the Alliance, to maintain security and pursue detente. In 1982 Spain joins the alliance. On October 3, 1990, with the reunification of Germany, the former East Germany becomes part of the Federal Republic of Germany and the alliance. To secure Soviet approval of united Germany remaining in NATO, it is agreed that there will be no new foreign military bases in the east, and that nuclear weapons will not be permanently stationed there. On March 31, 1991 the Warsaw Pact comes to an end. It is officially dissolved on July 1, 1991. The Soviet Union collapses in December of the same year.

In 1994 NATO takes its first military action, shooting down two Bosnian Serb aircraft violating a UN no-fly zone over central Bosnia and Herzegovina. NATO airstrikes the following year help bring the war in Bosnia to an end, resulting in the Dayton Agreement. In 1997 three former communist countries, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Poland, are invited to join NATO. They joined in 1999. The same year NATO sees its first broad-scale military engagement in the Kosovo War, where it wages an 11 -week bombing campaign against what was then the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, aimed at preventing the alleged ethnic cleansing of Albanians. It ends on June 11,1999, when Yugoslavian leader Slobodan Milosevic agrees to NATO's demands.

During the Prague summit in 2002, seven countries are invited to start talks in order to join the Alliance: Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Bulgaria, and Romania. The invited countries joined NATO on March 29, 2004. Further countries expressed the wish to join the alliance, including Albania, the Republic of Macedonia, Ukraine and Croatia.

On March 29, 2004 Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia joined NATO. NATO Summit 2006 took place in Latvia.

Категория: Ташкилотхои байналмилали | Добавил: Warior (15.12.2012)
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