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European Security And Defence Policy

Volume 405: debated on Monday 19 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the Le Touquet Summit declaration of 4 February, if he will place a copy of the text of NATO and EU agreements in the Library of each House; when they were concluded; and if he will make a statement. [111914]

The strategic partnership arrangements between the EU and NATO in crisis management, known as "Berlin Plus", were agreed in principle by the North Atlantic Council and the European Council on 13 December 2002. The detailed arrangements implementing the agreement were then finalised, leading to a final exchange of letters between the NATO Secretary General, my right hon. and noble Friend the Lord Robertson, and the Secretary General of the European Union Council of Ministers, Javier Solatia, on 17 March 2003.This exchange of letters and most of the detailed implementation documents were passed in confidence between NATO and the EU and member states and I am therefore withholding them under Exemption 1 of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information, which relates to Defence, Security and International Relations. There are, however, two documents which do not fall within the scope of this exemption. I shall make arrangements for a copy of the "Agreement between the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the European Union on the Security of Information" and a document "Defining the EU Capability Development Mechanism" to be placed in the Library of the House.