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U.S. Department of State

June 30, 1997


Lisbon Summit 1996 - Security/Arms Control Achievements


The Heads of State or Government of the 54 member states of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) held a summit meeting in Lisbon, Portugal, December 2-3, 1996, at which they adopted a number of important decisions regarding European security and arms control. The decisions taken by Vice President Gore, who led the United States delegation, and other leaders were based upon work done at the sixth OSCE Review Conference, held in Vienna, Austria, November 4-22, and at the Preparatory Meeting in Lisbon, November 25-29, 1996.

Security/Arms Control-Related Documents Adopted at the Lisbon Summit:

OSCE Summit Declaration

The Summit participants reaffirmed the OSCE principles as set forth in the Helsinki Final Act and other OSCE commitments. Specifically, the OSCE shall continue as the primary instrument for early warning, conflict prevention, crisis management and post-conflict rehabilitation. As such, OSCE complements the mutually reinforcing efforts of other European and trans-Atlantic organizations. The Declaration emphasizes that arms control constitutes an important element of the participants' common security, and that the CFE Treaty is and will remain key to their security and stability. The Declaration notes that the Forum for Security Cooperation (FSC) has adopted two decisions (see below) defining new directions for further work, and calls for the early ratification of the Open Skies Treaty. Furthermore, the Declaration states that the OSCE will continue to play an important role in the promotion and consolidation of peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and assist in the implementation of the Sub-Regional Arms Control Agreement and of the stabilization measures among the parties to the Dayton Peace Agreement. The Declaration also announces the adoption of the "Lisbon Declaration on a Common and Comprehensive Security Model for Europe for the 21st Century" as another mechanism for strengthening security and stability throughout the OSCE region.

Decision on Adaptation of the CFE Treaty

On December 1, 1996, the 30 States Parties to the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), meeting in the context of the OSCE summit in Lisbon, agreed to launch negotiations in Vienna, beginning in January 1997, for the purpose of adapting the CFE Treaty to the political/military changes that have occurred in the European security environment since the Treaty was signed in 1990, including the dissolution of the USSR and the Warsaw Pact. The terms of reference for these negotiations are based upon the mandate of the first CFE Treaty Review Conference, held in Vienna in May 1996, and the document on Scope and Parameters for the adaptation negotiations agreed in the context of the Lisbon summit. In this document, the States Parties agreed to strengthen the Treaty's system of limitations, verification, and information exchange, to adjust its group structure and zonal provisions, assure its functioning in crisis situations, and enhance its viability and effectiveness as a cornerstone of European security. In the Lisbon Document, the States Parties pledged to exercise restraint during the period of negotiations regarding the current postures and capabilities of their conventional armed forces -- in particular with respect to their levels of forces and deployments -- in the Treaty's area of application, in order to avoid that developments in the security situation in Europe would diminish the security of any State Party. Until entry into force of any agreed adaptation measures, the current Treaty and its associated documents will remain fully in force. The decision by the 30 CFE States Parties to initiate negotiations on adapting this landmark arms control treaty to the challenges of the post-Cold War era and ensure its viability in the 21st century is a significant achievement of the Lisbon summit.

Decision on a Framework for Arms Control

A Framework for Arms Control was adopted as Decision No. 8 by the OSCE's Forum for Security Cooperation on December 1, 1996. Its principal purpose is to contribute to the development of the OSCE area as an indivisible common security space by, inter alia, creating a web of interlocking and mutually reinforcing arms control obligations and commitments current and future. The Framework lists a number of negotiating principles to guide future arms control negotiations, including sufficiency, transparency through information exchange, limitations on forces, and verification. The following agreements were recognized as constituting a basis for the web: The CFE and Open Skies Treaties; the Concluding Act of the Negotiation on Personnel Strength of Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE-1A); Stabilizing Measures for Localized Crisis Situations; Principles Governing Conventional Arms Transfers; Global Exchange of Military Information; Vienna Document 1994; Code of Conduct on Politico-Military Aspects of Security; and Principles Governing Non-Proliferation.

Decision on Adoption of the Agenda for the Forum for Security Cooperation

The development of the agenda (future work program) for the FSC was adopted as Decision No. 9 by the OSCE's FSC on December 1, 1996. The summit participants decided that the FSC should, as a matter of priority, address the following issues: (I) implementation of agreed arms control measures; (II) regional measures; (III) developing a web of arms control agreements; and (IV) enhancing agreed measures and developing new ones.

Implementation of Bosnia Arms Control Agreements

Among the issues addressed at the OSCE Summit were implementation of the Agreement on Confidence- and Security-Building Measures in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Agreement on Sub-Regional Arms Control, which were reached pursuant to Annex 1-B of the General Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina (the Dayton Accord), as well as its relationship to beginning negotiations called for in Annex 1-B, Art. V. The Lisbon Declaration specifically states that "The Agreement on Confidence- and Security-Building Measures in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Sub-Regional Arms Control Agreement will continue to play an important role in promoting and consolidating military stability in and around Bosnia and Herzegovina. Favorable conditions for full implementation of these agreements should be fostered. Failure to meet the commitments under these agreements remains a serious concern. We support the November 1996 reaffirmation in Paris by the Ministerial Steering Board and the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina of the necessity for full implementation and strict avoidance of circumvention of both agreements. We call upon the Parties to fulfill their commitments through cooperation and good faith. With respect to regional arms control, and depending on satisfactory progress on the implementation of Articles II and IV, efforts undertaken to promote the implementation of Art. V of Annex 1-B of the Peace Agreement will continue."