Welcome to South-Eastern Europe Defence Ministerial - Coordination Committee (SEDM-CC) and Political Military Steering Committee (PMSC) portal
What is SEDM?
History and Objectives
The SEDM Process in brief
In consequence of the tumultuous experiences of the last decade and following NATO-led missions that aimed to build as well as to maintain peace and security in South-East Europe, a consideration for a necessity of a consistent regional cooperation mechanism in this region emerged in the international society. Hence came forward the South-East Europe Defense Ministerial (SEDM) Process, which began with a meeting of Ministers of Defense held in Tirana in March 1996, first of a series of meetings that convened the Ministers of Defense, Deputy Ministers of Defense and Deputy Chiefs of Defense of nations of South-East Europe. The activities undertaken within the context of the SEDM Process have developed the security of South-East Europe by three major ways: promoting regional cooperation and good neighborly relations, strengthening regional Defense capabilities as well as cooperation through collective efforts and last but not least, establishing links facilitating integration into Euro-Atlantic institutions.
Main objective of the SEDM process is strengthening understanding and politico-military cooperation in the region in order to enhance the stability and security in SEE.
- Promotion of mutual understanding, confidence and cooperation among member countries
- Contribution of SEDM and Multinational Peace Force of the SEE (MPFSEE) / South-Eastern Europe Brigade (SEEBRIG) to regional and worldwide security and stability
- Enhancement of the SEEBRIG interoperability and capability to deploy in peace support missions
- Facilitation of SEEBRIG employment in peace support operations
- Promotion of Euro-Atlantic integration processes of SEDM member nations
- Implementation and development of the SEDM projects
- Enlargement of the SEDM process with new members
- Cooperation with International Organizations (UN, EU, NATO and OCSE)
Since the MPFSEE Agreement was signed on 26 September 1998 the SEDM, with its constituent member nations, has achieved considerable progress. To date the South Eastern Europe Defence Ministerial (SEDM) has had a role to play in strengthening peace and stability in the region of South Eastern Europe and importantly has contributed to peace efforts further afield. During the past thirteen years the SEDM forum has been effective, with dialogue aimed at building a more secure and prosperous region through close regional co-operation and sharing common aims between member countries and observer nations. SEDM has achieved an internationally recognised image, including being held as an excellent model of mutual co-operation among States that are committed to strengthen international peace and stability. The development of those basic values is enshrined in such internationally renowned organisations, such as the UN, NATO, the EU and the OSCE. We have also created a military instrument, SEEBRIG, which enables us to work more closely together, to improve our joint defence capabilities, to assist in joining larger organisations such as NATO and the EU, which will strengthen Euro-Atlantic ties. In this vein could be suitable the proposal to stop the command rotation that takes place every four years in order to offer further possibilities to share professional expertise and to strengthen the already-existing cooperation.
MPFSEE / SEDM Outline Concept
Nevertheless, despite our achievement this is not the time for inactivity; further efforts should be made to develop and progress further this initiative. The MPFSEE / SEDM is no different – if we stand still our current structure will lack purpose, direction and effectiveness. We must do all we can, within the resources available, to co-ordinate ongoing regional security initiatives, promote the employment of SEEBRIG in conflict prevention and other peace support operations and to assist in the international community’s wider peace efforts. For those risks that we can predict, we must act both to reduce the likelihood of their occurring and develop the resilience to reduce their impact. Furthermore, the only way to improve the capacity of conflict prevention could be the wider integration into the useful partnership on a regional or international basis. Should we seek to undertake security tasks only within the boundaries of our countries or should we assist the wider international security effort to assure peace and stability inside and outside our region? Alliances and partnerships are a fundamental part of our approach to defence and security. We have built a constructive relationship across South Eastern Europe and we must maintain this to ensure peace and the conditions for mutual growth. However, we can go further by seeking greater international engagement that is essential to our future security that is based prioritarily on the Euro Atlantic structures as the bedrock of our defence, but also with an outward-facing EU that promotes security and prosperity. These deepened relationships, from which we can share capabilities, technologies and programmes, aim to ensure that collective resources can go further. Much of what we want to achieve can be fulfilled through SEEBRIG. However, we need to determine what we want SEEBRIG to do and, importantly, what we want it to become in the future. By utilising SEEBRIG in this way it can assist members willing to attain and maintain Euro-Atlantic standards, which are necessary to meet and maintain Euro-Atlantic and European aspirations. Importantly, we should also strive to raise the profile of SEDM and SEEBRIG, both internationally and nationally, so that communities understand what we do, why we do it and what benefits are derived from such collective efforts.
Athens Chairmanship 2017-2019
"Friendship is essentially a partnership"
Message of the Chairman Eleftherios Anghelopoulos, Ambassador a.h.
As Athens SEDM-CC/PMSC Chairmanship begins its mission, we are looking forward to promoting the activities, vision and ideas of the Process with the support of all its Nations and contributing to the fulfillment of the goals and priorities of the initiative. In these priorities, SEEBRIG will maintain its important role.
I will focus, as the Chairman of the Process for the next two years, until July 2019, on our close cooperation, based on our fundamental principles, in full respect of International Law, with a view to strengthening stability and security in the region of Southeastern Europe.
I believe that all the current projects and activities of SEDM Process i.e. Interconnection of Military Hospitals (IMIHO), SEDM Official Portal, Female Leaders in Security and Defence (FLSD), Building Integrity (BI), as well as the Southeastern Europe Simulation Exercise (SEESIM), are very crucial and we will explore ways to enrich them and increase their effectiveness.
Furthermore, Greece, during its Chairmanship, will continue the ongoing efforts to revitalize the SEDM Strategic Review and to finalize the work on the drafting of 6th Additional Protocol of the Multinational Peace Force South Eastern Europe Agreement.
Last but not least, all our actions and endeavors over the next two years will be governed by the words of Aristotle ‘’friendship is essentially a partnership’’, which are also the motto of Athens Chairmanship.
Priority goals of Athens Chairmanship
- Close and result oriented cooperation with all the SEDM Process Nations.
- Enhance efforts to promote mutual understanding, transparency, solidarity and good neighborly relations, in full respect of International Law.
- Working towards enhancing visibility of SEDM Process and SEEBRIG
- Optimize cost-effectiveness of all the current projects, initiatives and activities of SEDM Process and explore ways of enhancing them.
- Continue the efforts to revitalize SEDM Strategic Review.
- Finalize the Multinational Peace Force South Eastern Europe Agreement’s 6th Additional Protocol.
- Increase the effectiveness of the Process towards contributing to the safeguard of peace, security and stability in the region of Southeastern Europe.
- Usability, deployability and readiness of SEEBRIG in peace support operations, including disaster relief.
On behalf of the Athens SEDM Chairmanship, I would like to express our heartfelt wishes for a Happy Holiday Season!
During the past 12 months we worked together to accomplish the goals of our Initiative. The Athens Chairmanship was pleased to organize fruitful and productive meetings and I would like to express my appreciation for our accomplishments. We are looking forward to continuing our work in the first semester of 2019.
I would like to wish you and your families a New Year of health, happiness and prosperity!