2013: NATO's year in review

The top priority for the Alliance this year has been to build the capacity of Afghan security forces, so that they can take the lead for security throughout their country ahead of the withdrawal of the NATO-led force there in 2014. Detailed preparations for the post-2014 mission that will continue to train, assist and advise the Afghan forces also got underway.

But Afghanistan was not the only item on NATO’s agenda. From deploying Patriot missiles to Turkey as a defensive precaution, to countering pirates off the Horn of Africa, to strengthening NATO’s capabilities and deepening its cooperation with partner countries, it has been another busy year for the Alliance.

2013-01-26 00:00:00

PATRIOTS IN TURKEY

The first of six Patriot missile batteries, which are being deployed to Turkey to defend against possible missile attack from Syria, becomes operational and is placed under NATO command.

2013-02-12 00:00:00

HISTORIC VISIT TO IRELAND

In the first visit of any NATO Secretary General to Ireland, Anders Fogh Rasmussen meets Irish leaders and European Union defence ministers in Dublin.

2013-02-21 00:00:00

DEEPER COOPERATION WITH AUSTRALIA

NATO and Australia set out priorities for a bilateral programme of cooperation, further strengthening NATO's partnership with Asia-Pacific countries.

2013-03-11 00:00:00

Afghans conduct first air assault

Demonstrating their growing capability, the Afghan Air Force – which is advised by NATO Air Training Command-Afghanistan – coordinates its first air assault mission with Afghan Army Special Forces.

2013-04-12 00:00:00

First visit to Republic of Korea

Anders Fogh Rasmussen seeks to step up cooperation in talks with President Park Guen-hye and top government officials, during the first-ever visit by a NATO Secretary General to the Republic of Korea. He ends his trip with a short visit to the Demilitarized Zone.

2013-04-14 00:00:00

NATO and CHINA COUNTERING PIRACY

In the spirit of cooperation, NATO forces conduct a joint drill with a Chinese naval ship during counter-piracy operations in the Gulf of Aden. A team of Italian marines, deployed as part of NATO’s Ocean Shield, demonstrate a fast-rope insertion onto the deck of the CNS Harbin, Flagship of the Chinese Task Group.

2013-04-15 00:00:00

STRONGER PARTNERSHIP WITH JAPAN

Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe sign a Joint Political Declaration, providing a framework for the further development of cooperation.

2013-04-30 00:00:00

SAFEGUARDING ROYAL HANDOVER

NATO radar surveillance aircraft, known as AWACS, patrol the skies over the Dutch capital of Amsterdam, working with the Royal Netherlands Air Force to safeguard Dutch airspace during the royal investiture ceremonies and festivities.

2013-05-13 00:00:00

NEW NATO COMMANDER FOR OPERATIONS

US Air Force General Philip Mark Breedlove takes over command of Allied Command Operations, during a ceremony at Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) in Mons, Belgium, in the presence of Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

2013-06-05 00:00:00

POST-2014 MISSION IN AFGHANISTAN

NATO Defence Ministers endorse the concept for the new NATO-led mission that will train, advise and assist the Afghan security forces after 2014, when the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force ends.

2013-06-08 00:00:00

LOGISTICIANS IN FAIRYLAND

NATO forces are deployed to the fictitious country of “Fairyland” to put logistic systems, equipment and procedures to the test in what is the Alliance’s largest-ever logistics exercise. Taking place in Slovakia, Capable Logistician 2013 involves NATO member and partner countries in a simulated crisis involving inter-ethnic conflict and floods of refugees.

2013-06-11 00:00:00

DETECTING SUICIDE BOMBERS

Technology for the remote, real-time detection of explosives is tested live in an underground station in a major European capital. The ground-breaking technology is the result of four years of joint work between experts from NATO and Russia.

2013-06-18 00:00:00

AFGHANISTAN IN LEAD FOR SECURITY

President Hamid Karzai announces the fifth and final group of provinces, cities and districts to undergo transition to Afghan lead for security in the coming months. As this last phase of transition is completed, the role of NATO-led forces will have shifted from combat to support.

2013-06-26 00:00:00

HIGH-LEVEL VISIT TO GEORGIA

During a two-day visit of the North Atlantic Council to Georgia to assess the progress the country has made towards Euro-Atlantic integration, the Allies praise progress and encourage further reforms. They also thank Georgia for its contribution to Afghanistan, where it is currently the largest non-NATO troop contributor.

2013-07-09 00:00:00

KSF: FULL OPERATIONAL CAPABILITY

The North Atlantic Council declares that the Kosovo Security Force has reached full operational capability. This lightly armed force is responsible for civil protection operations and assisting civil authorities in responding to natural disasters and other emergencies

2013-08-08 00:00:00

ESCORTING WORLD'S LARGEST SHIP

The Dutch Frigate HNLMS Van Speijk, part of NATO’s counter-piracy Operation Ocean Shield, ensures the safe passage of the cargo vessel Maersk McKinney Moller, currently the world’s largest ship, as it transits the Gulf of Aden.

2013-08-26 00:00:00

LIVE EXERCISE IN NORWAY'S SKIES

Fighter jets and helicopters from nine NATO nations take part in the live-flying exercise “Brilliant Arrow” at Oerland Air Base in western Norway. It is the first of a series of exercises to test the skills and interoperability of the NATO Response Force which will culminate in the Steadfast Jazz exercise in November. Taking part are some 50 military aircraft and 800 staff from France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Turkey and the United Kingdom.

2013-09-06 00:00:00

NEW ENERGY SECURITY CENTRE of Excellence

Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen and Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaité inaugurate the NATO Energy Security Centre of Excellence in Vilnius. The Centre will provide analyses on energy developments, provide training and education, and help to improve the energy efficiency of armed forces. It is the latest of a number of NATO Centres of Excellence that have been set up to address a range of emerging security challenges.

2013-09-23 00:00:00

NATO-UN: Five-year milestone

As world leaders gather in New York for the annual plenary session of the United Nations General Assembly, NATO marks the fifth anniversary of the signing of the Joint Declaration on UN/NATO Secretariat Cooperation, which has taken staff cooperation between the two organisations to a new level.

2013-09-27 00:00:00

NATO-RUSSIA EXERCISE IN THE SKIES

Fighter aircraft from Polish, Turkish and Russian air forces together with air traffic controllers successfully conduct a live five-day joint NATO-Russia counter-terrorism exercise, “Vigilant Skies 2013”.

2013-09-30 00:00:00

BRILLIANT MARINER

A large fleet of warships conduct manoeuvres off Italian coast as part of the "Brilliant Mariner" exercise to test and sharpen the ability of units from different NATO countries to work together seamlessly as part of the NATO Response Force.

2013-10-10 00:00:00

UKRAINE JOINS OCEAN SHIELD

A Ukrainian Navy frigate joins NATO’s Operation Ocean Shield, marking the first time a partner nation has contributed to NATO’s counter-piracy effort, which has been operating off the Horn of Africa since 2009.

2013-10-21 00:00:00

NATO ADVISORY TEAM FOR LIBYA

In response to a request from the Libyan government, NATO Allies agree to establish a small advisory team to provide advice to the Libyan authorities on defence institution building, as part of the overall efforts of the international community.

2013-10-23 00:00:00

WOMEN, PEACE AND SECURITY

An independent review finds that NATO and its operational partners have made ‘significant progress’ in efforts to develop a gender perspective in NATO-led operations in Afghanistan and Kosovo – but says there is ‘ample room for improvement’.

2013-11-02 00:00:00

STEADFAST JAZZ GETS UNDERWAY

The Alliance’s largest exercise since 2006, “Steadfast Jazz”, kicks off in the Baltic states, Poland and across NATO bases in Europe. The week-long exercise involves around 6,000 troops including air, land, maritime and special forces components. One of its aims is to test the staff of the military headquarters that will lead the NATO Response Force in 2014.

2013-11-18 00:00:00

HELPING IRAQ TACKLE IEDS

As part of NATO’s efforts to helping improve the ability of Iraqi personnel to address the threat of improvised explosive devices (IEDs), a first training course takes place at the Centre of Excellence in Explosive Ordnance Disposal in Slovakia, with the support of the NATO Science for Peace Programme.

2013-11-26 00:00:00

ANNUAL CYBER DEFENCE EXERCISE

NATO launches a three-day cyber defence exercise, “Cyber Coalition 2013”, to test the Alliance’s ability to defend its networks from cyber attacks. With more than 30 nations involved, this is the largest exercise of its kind.

2013-12-03 00:00:00

LOOKING AHEAD TO SUMMIT IN 2014

Priorities for the next NATO Summit to be held in September next year are at the top of the agenda at a two-day meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Brussels.

2013: NATO's year in review

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