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Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia
10 October 2000
Georgia and the World: A Vision and Strategy for the Future
The United States and its NATO Allies will continue to have a shared interest in arms control regimes that enhance security and stability at the lowest possible level of forces consistent with preserving Alliance capabilities for collective defense and other security-building missions. Among the arms control regimes applicable specifically to European ter-ritory, none is more central than the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE). Signed in November 1990 by the 16 members of NATO and 6 members of the Warsaw Pact, the CFE Treaty estab-lished equal East-West (i.e., “bloc-to-bloc”) limits on five key categories of conventional armaments—battle tanks, armored combat vehicles, artillery pieces, combat aircraft, and attack helicopters. This approach was appropriate at the time, since it eliminated the Warsaw Pact’s longstanding and destabilizing numerical superiority in armor and artillery. With the collapse of the Warsaw Pact and break-up of the Soviet Union, those former Soviet states in the area covered by the Treaty (Europe from the Atlantic to the Urals) acceded to the CFE Treaty, which now covers 30 Treaty Parties.
The CFE Treaty’s accomplishments to date are remarkable. More than 70,000 pieces of Treaty-Limited Equipment have been destroyed, more than 3,500 intrusive on-site inspections have been conducted, and those inspections—along with the CFE Treaty’s detailed reporting requirements—have provided unprecedented transparency and pre-dictability of military forces in Europe.
The CFE Adaptation Agreement signed in November 1999 updates the original CFE Treaty. Once it has been ratified and enters into force, the Adaptation Agreement will create a new, highly stable, transparent set of limitations on conventional forces and bring the CFE Treaty into line with today’s European security environment. The CFE Final Act associated with the Adaptation Agreement contains several significant political commitments by Treaty Parties, including agreements on the complete withdrawal of Russian armed forces from Moldova and partial withdrawal of Russian forces from Georgia.