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08-10 Jun 15

Strategic Military Partner Conference in Georgia

From 8-10 June 2015 NATO Allied Command Transformation, led by Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, General Jean-Paul Paloméros, FRA AF, held a three-day Strategic Military Partner Conference (SMPC) in Tbilisi, Georgia. SMPC is a core event within SACT’s Strategic Engagement Campaign and gives ACT a chance to exchange ideas regarding transformation with the Chiefs of Defence and subject matter experts from NATO and partner nations from around the globe.

First held in 2005, this year’s conference attracted more than 250 military representatives from 48 countries from NATO’s Partnership for Peace (PfP), Mediterranean Dialogue (MD), Istanbul Cooperation Initiative (ICI), and Partners across the Globe (PatG) programmes.

In addition to Alliance members and Partners, the North Atlantic Council approved representatives from Brazil to participate in the discussions as well as representatives from the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross. “Partnership is not sequential, it’s a continuous effort. Partnership is no longer an option, it is the option for the Alliance…” said General Paloméros. He  went on to talk about strengthening partnerships throughout NATO saying “Reaching out to NATO’s numerous and diverse partners who’ve shown up here, fully committed, to cooperate together in order to build and maintain security and stability throughout the world.”

The conference comprised panel and separate syndicate discussions on Innovation as an enabler for partnerships, one on the Connected Forces Initiative and one on the Partnership Interoperability Initiative.

NATO School Oberammergau was represented in the conference by Captain Scott W. Butler, USA N, Commandant NATO School Oberammergau (NSO) and Colonel Zsolt Mikusi, HUN A, Director Strategy, Plans and Policy at NSO.

Perspectives from the conference will be organised into a SMPC Analysis Report, and feed the ACT transformational development process. The report will be forwarded to all relevant NATO authorities, including the Secretary General and the NATO international and military staffs, as well as all conference participants.