NATO's original efforts to promote cooperation with non-NATO states in peace support operations had been advanced through the NACC. While much of the first year of NACC's existence was inspired with efforts to agree on a viable work plan for cooperation on practical matters, it was apparent from the first meeting of NACC ministers in December 1991 that one topic that would dominate discussion among members would be how to keep the peace among the newly developing democratic states of Central and Eastern Europe. Two main themes came up from these discussions: the ambition of many of the NACC partners for closer integration in NATO activities as a block against instability and external threats; and the specific necessity for cooperation in developing a common approach to peacekeeping. It was the second of these themes that was addressed first, with the establishment of the NACC Ad Hoc Group on Cooperation in Peacekeeping at the meeting of NACC Foreign Ministers in Brussels on 18 December 1992.
The Political-Military Steering Committee/Ad Hoc Group on Cooperation in Peacekeeping (PMSC/AHG), which operates in the framework of the EAPC, was established with the aim of developing a common understanding on the political principles of and the tools for peacekeeping, and to share experience and thereby develop common practical approaches and cooperation in support of peacekeeping under the responsibility of the UN or the CSCE. It serves as the main forum for consultations on political and conceptual issues related to peacekeeping. The PMSC/AHG reports periodically to meetings of Foreign and Defence Ministers on these matters. All meetings of the PMSC/AHG include Partner countries.
In the course of its work, the Group has produced two detailed reports on cooperation in peacekeeping. The first report from 1993 - known as the “Athens Report” - dealt with conceptual approaches to peacekeeping. A second report, the “Follow-On to the Athens Report” of 1995, revisited these issues in the light of experiences gained since 1993. The Athens Report states “that there is no single, generally accepted definition of peacekeeping. There is a need to develop a common understanding of peacekeeping, proceeding from the definitions and concepts of peacekeeping contained in the relevant UN and CSCE documents, including the UN Secretary General's Agenda for Peace. Traditionally, peacekeeping has been used to describe operations based on Chapter VI of the UN Charter. Operations similar to those conducted under Chapter VI may be carried out under the authority of the CSCE on the basis of the 1992 Helsinki Document. Operations based on recent extensions of the concept of peacekeeping, aimed at the protection or establishment of peace and based on Chapter VII of the UN Charter, have been carried out under the authority of the UN Security Council.” [9]

In considering NACC cooperation in peacekeeping, the following definitions may be useful:
“Conflict Prevention: This includes different activities, in particular, under Chapter VI of the UN Charter, ranging from diplomatic initiatives to preventive deployment of troops, intended to prevent disputes from escalating into armed conflicts or from spreading. Conflict prevention can include fact-finding missions, consultation, warnings, inspections and monitoring. Preventive deployments normally consist of civilians and/or military forces being deployed to avert a crisis.
Peacemaking: Diplomatic actions conducted after the commencement of conflict, with the aim of establishing a peaceful settlement. They can include the provision of good offices, mediation, conciliation and such actions as diplomatic isolation and sanctions.
Peacekeeping, narrowly defined, is the containment, moderation and/or termination of hostilities between or within States, through the medium of an impartial third party intervention, organized and directed internationally; using military forces, and civilians to complement the political process of conflict resolution and to restore and maintain peace. Peacekeeping operations based on Chapter VI of the UN Charter have traditionally involved the deployment of a peacekeeping force in the field, with the consent of the parties, including supervising demarcation lines, monitoring ceasefires and controlling buffer zones, disarming and demobilising warring factions and supervising borders. Over the past few years, the UN has significantly expanded the type of military operations carried out under "peacekeeping", to include for example protection of humanitarian relief and refugee operations. Peacekeeping operations may also contain substantial civilian elements, usually under the command of a civilian head of mission, such as civilian police, electoral or human rights monitors.
Peace-enforcement: Action under Chapter VII of the UN Charter using military means to restore peace in an area of conflict. This can include dealing with an inter-State conflict or with internal conflict to meet a humanitarian need or where state institutions have largely collapsed.
Peace-building: Post-conflict action to identify and support structures which will tend to strengthen and solidify a political settlement in order to avoid a return to conflict. It includes mechanisms to identify and support structures which will tend to consolidate peace, advance a sense of confidence and well-being and support economic reconstruction, and may require military as well as civilian involvement.“ [10]

[9] - In The Athens Report -
[10]- In The Athens Report -
Modifié le: vendredi 4 février 2011, 13:32