North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)
After the 9/11 attacks on the United States, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Allies invoked Article 5 of the Washington Treaty, the collective-defense clause, for the first time in NATO's history. Shortly afterwards, in response to requests by the United States, a number of initial support measures were agreed, including: enhanced intelligence-sharing on terrorism; assistance to Allies and other states subject to increased terrorist threats as a result of their support for the campaign against terrorism; increased security for facilities on NATO territory; backfilling of selected NATO assets required to support operations against terrorism; blanket overflight clearances for military flights related to operations against terrorism; access to ports and airfields for such operations; deployment of NATO naval forces to the Eastern Mediterranean, etc. A Terrorist Threat Intelligence Unit has been created to improve intelligence-sharing and analysis on terrorism. This Unit draws on civilian and military intelligence resources, from both NATO and Partner countries, in order to provide assessments to the North Atlantic Council and NATO staff. In addition, a broad review of the Alliance's intelligence structures is under way.
The Alliance has developed a consistent policy with respect to terrorism, which combines forceful condemnation of terrorism in all its forms, a commitment to unity and solidarity in the face of this threat, and a determination to combat it for as long as is necessary. Terrorism is now a standing item on the agendas of both the North Atlantic Council and the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council. Regular consultations on terrorism among Allies and Partners and with other organizations promote common assessments and concerted action, thereby helping to ensure a unified international response in the fight against terrorism. NATO has also launched the Istanbul Cooperation Initiative (ICI), an offer to engage in practical security cooperation activities with states throughout the Broader Middle East. The ICI offers practical cooperation with interested nations in such areas as counterterrorism, counter-WMD and cooperation on border security.