b_270_180_16777215_00_images_PICTURES_2019_0924_Advisors_Pict.jpgNATO’s progress report to Foreign Ministers on enhancing NATO’s role in the International Community’s fight against terrorism led to the “2018 Workshop on civil-military cooperation in response to a large-scale CBRN terrorist attack”. Following the workshop recommendations, the Civil Emergency Planning Committee (CEPC), supported by the Committee on Proliferation in Defence Format (CP(D)), developed non-binding guidelines for enhanced civil-military cooperation to deal with the consequences of large-scale CBRN events associated with terrorist attacks. However, guidelines are only one part of the solution; and now NATO and its member nations must expand on those guidelines. That is the reason why the Joint Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) Defence (JCBRND) COE took the initiative to prepare and conduct an advisors conference on enhancing civil-military cooperation in case of a large-scale CBRN incident. The conference took place in Prague, Czech Republic from 17 – 19 September 2019 aiming to contribute actively to NATO HQ efforts to enhance civil-military cooperation at political and strategic levels on CBRN defence, crisis response and consequence management to support national efforts.

Ambassador Major General (ret.) Petr Voznica, chaired the conference. In total, 39 representatives from ten nations (Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, The Netherlands, Poland, Romania, and United States of America) and International Organisations (NATO HQ – International Staff, SHAPE, JCBRND COE) attended. Colonel Vratislav Osvald, Colonel Wolfgang Reich, Colonel (ret.) Milan Novotný, Mr. Zdenek Hýbl and Mr. Jasper Krause represented the JCBRND COE. Amb. Voznica opened the conference stating that NATO is facing evolving threats from both state and non-state actors that includes a range of complex challenges, including hybrid warfare, terrorism, cyber-attacks and wide range of events involving weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and CBRN threats.

H.E. Ambassador Jakub Landovský, Permanent Representative of the Czech Republic to NATO, expressed his satisfaction on the progress made in the non-binding guidelines for enhanced civil-military cooperation in order to deal with the consequences of large-scale CBRN events associated with terrorist attack, which was endorsed by NATO Ministers of Defence in February 2019.

Colonel Osvald , Director of the JCBRND COE, presented a threat Assessment and current gap analysis, followed by intense discussions leading to a variety of recommendations addressing NATO Headquarters, NATO Command Structure, NATO member nations and, of course, the JCBRND COE.

Amb. Voznica concluded the conference summarizing the way ahead, and thanking Colonel Osvald for his and the JCBRND COE’s efforts on a successful conference. He added “Colonel Osvald, your Centre deserve its name. You are really excellent.”

Finally, the COE Event Support Team consisting of Major Eva Vitásková, Major Jakub Smolík, Major Petr Koudelka, Captain Zuzana Králíková, Captain. Jan Křenek, Warrant Officer Jan Gottwald and Master Sergeant Vlastimil Šplíchal went above and beyond to make this a first-class conference. While they were often working unseen in the background, without their unwavering efforts the conference would not have been successful.

What is the way-ahead? JCBRND COE will report to and brief the JCBRND COE Steering Committee, NATO Committee on Proliferation in Defence Format (CD(D)) and Civil Emergency Planning Committee (CEPC) on the outcome of the conference. The JCBRND COE will also brief the NATO Military Committee (MC), IMS/IS CBRN Defence Coordination Meeting, (MCJSB/NAAG) JCBRND-CDG, (MCMedSB) CBRNMed WG, and other relevant bodies.

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Ambassador Major General Petr VOZNICA H.E. Ambassador Jakub LANDOVSKY Colonel (G.S.) Vratislav OSVALD

Author/Photos: LtCol Bernd ALLERT (DEU-A), Cpt Zuzana KRÁLIKOVÁ (CZE-A)