Law Institute in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Team of authors:
Sead Turčalo, PhD, Muhamed Mujakić, PhD, Dijana Gupta, PhD, and Biljana Radanović, BEc.
Reviewers: Academician Mirko Pejanović and Doc.dr. Alija Kožjak
Editor: Nedim Hogić, LL.M
Co-editor and proofreader: Adisa Busuladžić, MA
Assistant/Associate: Jasmin Spahić
Word processing: Ivica Jukić
Policy Brief was produced within the Project: “Project for Enhancement of Euro-Atlantic Reforms (PEER)”/”Projekt za jačanje euroatlantskih reformi (PEER)” and supported by the United States Embassy in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The views in Policy Brief do not necessarily reflect the views of the United States Embassy in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but authors’ views.
Excerpt from reviews
Excerpt from Academician Mirko Pejanović’s review
In the analysis of the course of NATO integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the author team started from the standpoint that Bosnia and Herzegovina based its attitude towards NATO integration on the commitment that the issue of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s membership is a strategic priority of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s foreign policy and that such policy is based on the Law on Defense of BiH.
Further cooperation between Bosnia and Herzegovina and NATO takes place within two dimensions. One is technical and it runs successfully. The other one is political, and it is burdened with polarization caused, on the one hand, by inter-party politics among the majority of parliamentary parties in the BiH Parliament, and by the outright political rejection of NATO integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina by the political elites in the Republika Srpska. With this in mind, the authors of the study conceptualized their recommendations in order to take some new steps in the process of NATO integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The authors’ recommendations provide the basis for a new dynamics of state authorities, political parties and civil society actors in the strategically important process of NATO integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Academician Mirko Pejanović, full member of the Science and Art Academy of BiH
Excerpt from Doc. dr. Alija Kožljak’s review
Policy Brief (Patience and Perseverance of Bosnia and Herzegovina in NATO Integrations – Challenges and Advantages/Prospective) is one of the important forms of action in the context of the consideration of and the support for the Euro-Atlantic integrations. The objective examination of the problem, and scientifically based presentation of the facts obtained by the authors of the text, confirms the outright justification of the need for the active participation of a broader range of participants in NATO integration process. Adequate structuring of the text and its conciseness allow for the arguments presented herein to be easily understood by a broader audience, and for the suggestions to be realistic and convincing for the decision makers. The analysis clearly suggests that the Euro-Atlantic integration process does not have any viable alternative. Other options would undoubtedly keep Bosnia and Herzegovina stymied in a persistent stalemate and uncertainty …
Doc. dr. Alija Kožljak, Head of the Department of International Relations and European Studies of IBU
The membership of Bosnia and Herzegovina in NATO is one of the most contentious political issues in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Although set as a strategic priority of the foreign policy of Bosnia and Herzegovina and having been an obligation of all the institutions of executive and legislative powers under the Law on Defense, this issue remains controversial to this day. Since the establishment of the formal cooperation with NATO in 2006, by joining the Partnership for Peace (PfP) program and all through 2010, and the conditional invitation to join the Membership Action Plan (MAP) – Bosnia and Herzegovina has been actively working on building interoperability and aligning its standards with those of the Alliance, particularly in the military-defense domain. However, when the obligation to register military property to the central state government became a requirement for activating the MAP (the so-called Tallinn condition for MAP activation) in 2010, this seemingly technical obligation became a political issue and blocked further steps toward BiH joining NATO. In addition to that, the “freezing” of the state budget at the 2009 level directly slowed down the military-defense sector in its efforts to fully implement its current goals and to define some more advanced partnership goals in the programs of cooperation with the Alliance.
The decision of the Presidency to adopt the Reform Program, as a compromise version of the Annual Action Plan, and the recent decision of the Council of Ministers to adopt the self-assessment of the implementation of activities under that document still made a step forward in the integration process.
Having recognized the absence of a constructive public debate and public communication strategy on the issue of BiH joining NATO, the authors of this Policy Brief, analyzed the integration process thus far and formulated the recommendations for national authorities and international actors in order to bring this issue back into the focus of a public debate and to encourage the implementation of the reform steps defined in the Reform Program.
2. Problem background
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has been present in Bosnia and Herzegovina since December 20, 1995 through the Implementation Force (IFOR), and later through the Stabilization Force (SFOR). NATO has played a key role in the implementation of peace process in Bosnia and Herzegovina in terms of peace stabilization and defense reform by transforming the former three military defense structures into a single Armed Forces and the Ministry of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Although NATO handed over the peace stabilization duties to the European Union under the Berlin Plus Agreement of December 2002, it is still present in Bosnia and Herzegovina through the NATO Headquarters in Sarajevo; its primary task is supporting EUFOR and assisting the NATO integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
On March 17, 2004, the BiH Presidency passed the conclusion confirming that BiH and all its institutions must meet the necessary conditions for BiH to join the Partnership for Peace (PfP) Program run by NATO. Bosnia and Herzegovina started the formal cooperation with NATO by joining the Partnership for Peace Program at the NATO Summit in Riga in 2006.
Immediately after the signing of Dayton Peace Agreement, NATO’s involvement in BiH primarily focused on the defense sector reform. Joining the Partnership for Peace Program by BiH was the next step in cooperation, and it provided an opportunity for BiH to establish its diplomatic mission at NATO Headquarters, and to improve the existing co-operation mechanisms. In the period of 2006 to 2010, Bosnia and Herzegovina developed, its cooperation with the Alliance through: a) Planning and Review Process (PARP) aiming to increase the interoperability of BiH Armed Forces (AF) with the Alliance and to enable NATO to come up with the proposal of the so-called Partnership Objectives together with BiH; b) Individual Partnership Program (IPP) focusing on the approximation of BiH defense system to the Alliance standards; the activities under this program are determined in accordance with the development priorities and budgetary resources available to AF BiH; c) Intensive Dialogue (ID); d) IPAP as a comprehensive mechanism of cooperation between BiH and NATO in which BiH participated for ten years after the conditional invitation to join the Membership Action Plan.
After the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina had decided by consensus in 2009 to apply for the Membership Action Plan (MAP), Bosnia and Herzegovina was officially invited to join the Membership Action Plan at the NATO Summit in Tallinn in 2010. By joining the MAP, a potential member-country expresses its commitment to become a full-fledged member of NATO, and in return, it receives the assistance and support from the Alliance tailored to its individual needs, on the understanding that the participation in the MAP does not prejudge any final decision on its membership.
It should be noted here that, unlike PARP and IPP, which relate exclusively to the defense sector, IPAP, ID and MAP also include all important aspects of political, security, legal and economic reforms.
After an extremely active period in the process of reforms and the fulfillment of obligations on the Atlantic Path (2006-2010), Bosnia and Herzegovina entered a period of stagnation. The main obstacle among the political players was the requirement to transfer the ownership of 63 military locations from the entities onto the State of Bosnia and Herzegovina ownership, with 23 of them being located in the RS.
In February 2011, BiH submitted the second IPAP Program for Bosnia and Herzegovina, which primarily enabled the representatives of BiH Armed Forces to continue participating in military exercises and trainings organized by NATO. After the visit of the then NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen (March 2013), and the extended meeting of the North Atlantic Council and BiH (March 2014), the Council of Ministers of BiH adopted its third IPAP Program for the period of 2014 to 2016.
In July 2016, the summit communiqué of the NATO Summit in Warsaw, in the part relating to BiH, called for an intensification of activities on fulfilling the Tallinn condition (registration of military property) and the adoption of “The Defense Review”. BiH was praised for its contribution to the NATO-run operations, as well as for its commitment to regional dialogue, cooperation and security. At the 31st regular session held on November 24, 2016 the BiH Presidency adopted, , the “Defense Review” and the “Plan for the Development and Modernization of BiH AF 2017-2027”as an integral part of the “Defense Review”, which is related to future financial investments in the defense sector. The “Defense Review” aims to define the bases of the vision and long-term development of BiH AF and to plan further activities in the defense sector aimed at building modern, well-equipped and trained armed forces capable of responding to various requirements and needs. In February 2017, the BiH Presidency adopted the “Defense Review Implementation Plan” and the “Action Plan for Implementing the Development and Modernization of the Armed Forces of BiH in the period 2017-2027.
In March 2018, the Presidency of BiH adopted the program titled “Foreign Policy Strategy of Bosnia and Herzegovina 2018-2023”, which emphasizes that, aside from the European Union membership, NATO membership remains one of the primary goals of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s foreign policy.
At their meeting in Brussels in early December 2018, the Foreign Ministers of NATO member countries decided to allow Bosnia and Herzegovina to submit its first ANP (Annual National Program). The Annual National Program, or ANP, which is submitted to NATO, is a key segment of the Membership Action Plan (MAP) participated only by those partner countries that have expressed their aspirations for membership in the Alliance. It is a comprehensive document relating to the achievements and planned reforms in several areas (political, economic, security, legal and defense).
In addition to that, NATO membership was defined as a priority in two foreign-policy documents of BiH – “General Directions and Priorities for the Implementation of Foreign Policy of Bosnia and Herzegovina” of 2003 and the “Foreign Policy Strategy of BiH 2018-2023”.
The BiH Constitution does not restrict BiH joining NATO and it does not impede the deployment of the members of BiH Armed Forces to appropriate military operations. Under Article V.3. of the Constitution of BiH, the Presidency of BiH is responsible, inter alia, for implementing the foreign policy of BiH, which includes applying for the membership in international organizations and institutions of which BiH has not been made a member yet. The Foreign Policy Strategy adopted in 2018 reads that “the implementation of activities in relation to NATO” remains a priority, and full membership as its ultimate goal is inferred in the formulation that the institutions will implement such activities in accordance with the Law on Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina. As the Law on Defense in Article 84 obligates the executive and legislative power at the state level to carry out all activities necessary to obtain the full membership of Bosnia and Herzegovina in NATO, the NATO membership is treated as a strategic goal.
In practice, however, the involvement of the executive and legislative powers in the implementation of NATO membership activities is hampered by internal polarizations and disagreements over this foreign-policy goal of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The growth of political polarization and the intensification of anti-NATO rhetoric have caused in the Republika Srpska entity a constant decline of public support for the potential NATO membership of BiH. At the time of preparation of the Communication Strategy of Bosnia and Herzegovina within the NATO integration process in 2008, 66% of the respondents in the Republika Srpska entity were against NATO membership, and in 2018, 82% of them said no to NATO membership.
The “BiH Reform Program” was therefore agreed only at the session of the Presidency of BiH held on November 19, 2019, after lengthy negotiations and work on the text, and it represents a summary version of the ANP submitted to NATO and it was accepted as such. NATO’s acknowledgment of the receipt of the “BiH Reform Program” eventually activated the Membership Action Plan (MAP).
At the same time, the absence of strategic approach to creating an informed public opinion on the issue leaves ample room for conducting highly emotional public debates whose origins stem from the recent history of NATO’s military interventions in the region.
In addition to the questionable will of the national political actors, BiH’s progress towards NATO membership also formally depends on specific legal and reform requirements set in the annual plans submitted to the Alliance by the countries that cooperate with NATO, as well as the maintenance of specific standards of functioning of BiH Armed Forces. Joining NATO brings significant benefits not only to the Armed Forces of BiH but also to the overall international rating, international positioning and the economic progress of BiH.
3. BiH cooperation with NATO up to the present time
Since the establishment of formal relations in 2006, Bosnia and Herzegovina and NATO have focused the cooperation on several key areas. These are primarily capacity building and interoperability in order for the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina to achieve compatibility with the NATO standards. To this end, BiH, as a partner country, participated in the Planning and Review Process (PARP), which primarily serves as a key mechanism for measuring the progress in military defense sector reform and guides reform steps in this area. In addition to that, the PARP provides the basis for identifying the forces and capabilities that could be made available to NATO for international training, exercises and peacekeeping and crisis management operations. Bosnia and Herzegovina is also an active participant in the Building Integrity (BI) program that focuses on good governance and the transparent and effective use of defense resources. The NATO-accredited National Peace Support Operations Training Center (PSOTC) offers professional training on integrity building and other topics to NATO and partner countries. Bosnia and Herzegovina participated in the ISAF mission, in the NATO training mission in Afghanistan, and in the post-ISAF operation called Resolute Support Mission (RSM).
Despite the perception that the cooperation between Bosnia and Herzegovina and the North Atlantic Alliance takes place exclusively in the defense sector, everyday practice shows the involvement of institutions outside the military-defense structures are in the integration process.
Considering its activities and its role in the implementation of the foreign policy strategy of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of BiH is the leading institution for the NATO integration process. Besides, the new understanding of the nature of security encompasses the domains that require the involvement of a broad range of institutions in the fields of economics, transport, justice, cyber security and the like.
As part of broader cooperation with NATO, Bosnia and Herzegovina has developed its national capacity for emergency and disaster management, including the development of a legal framework for coping with civil emergencies and establishing a civil crisis information system to coordinate emergency operations. This type of cooperation proved to be especially useful in May, 2014 during the catastrophic floods in Bosnia and Herzegovina, when the State sought assistance from the NATO’s Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Center (EADRCC). NATO coordinated the emergency assistance of allied and partner countries, by sending helicopters, boats, drinking water, food, shelter tents and funds. Furthermore, in 2017 Bosnia and Herzegovina successfully hosted The Annual EADRCC Disaster Preparedness and Response Exercise that brought together the allies, partners and international organizations.
In the field of scientific and technical cooperation, Bosnia and Herzegovina has also participated in the Science for Peace and Security (SPS) program since 2007. The leading areas of cooperation include: advanced technology, disaster response, explosives detection and cyber defense.
The cooperation with the Alliance up till now can be evaluated from technical and political perspectives. Technical cooperation is ongoing continuously at a satisfactory level, while political aspects follow the current degree of polarization of intra-political relations in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This is evidenced by the painstaking process of drafting and adopting the first Annual Action Plan that was titled the Reform Program as a gesture of compromise. The Reform Program, albeit somewhat reduced in comparison, is essentially similar to the action plans previously sent by other aspirant countries for the membership in the Alliance.
It should be emphasized that to date, a total of 14 military exercises (of lesser or greater intensity) have been conducted in BiH primarily by NATO military forces and the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, e.g. the Bilateral Exercise, which took place in November 2020 at Manjača military range with more than 300 soldiers of BiH AF and the US Army participating therein, and which received a positive assessment from the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), as well as the “Quick Response 21” exercise conducted in May 2021 in part at Manjača, after which the US Ambassador to BiH HE Eric Nelson stated that ‘the NATO door is open to BiH’.
4. Registration of prospective military property
When Bosnia and Herzegovina was invited to participate in the MAP in 2010, the foreign ministers of NATO member countries urged BiH authorities at the same time to resolve the key issue relating to the registration of prospective military property.
The process of registering prospective military property has grown from a technical issue into a mini geopolitical issue in the last ten years, as it has started to be utilized as a proof that Bosnia and Herzegovina is a state with no property deeds. In this process, assigning the military property onto the State of Bosnia and Herzegovina has been implemented almost exclusively at the territory of the Federation Bosnia and Herzegovina entity with only a single one out of total of 33 registered locations, located in Republika Srpska entity (Veliki Žep barracks in Han Pijesak).
In August 2017, following the judgment of the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina on the appeal regarding the registration of prospective military property, the RS entity was ordered to register the military barracks in the municipality of Han Pijesak to the State of Bosnia and Herzegovina. This judgment contributed to the general perception of the progress made in the respective area, and it was regarded as the decisive factor for inviting BiH to submit its first ANP in 2018. The Office of the Attorney General of Bosnia and Herzegovina collected the property and legal documents for the remaining locations in that entity. It should be noted here that the activation of the MAP also activated the implementation of BiH Defense Review under which the BiH AF will use 57 instead of 63 prospective locations, and that directly defines the remaining number locations to be registered.
The Reform Program itself, which was adopted by the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina on November 19, 2019, is a document that is largely compatible with the requirements that are set before the State also in the process of integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina into the European Union. Out of total 343 activities within the Reform Program, the stipulated deadline for the implementation of 169 of them was 2019-2020, while the remaining ones have been continuous or several-year activities.
For some of them, the time frames are inadequately set, and in a number of activities it is difficult to make proper evaluation of the level of implementation. Except in the areas of environmental protection and economic development activities, in all other areas, according to the self-assessment of the institutions involved, certain activities have been undertaken.
The specifics of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s joining NATO make purposeless any comparisons with other countries previously involved in this process. If we compare the document that Bosnia and Herzegovina sent to NATO Headquarters in Brussels as its first annual program, for example, with Macedonia’s first annual MAP, we will not be able to draw any significant conclusions.
The self-assessment of the implementation of activities under the Reform Program of Bosnia and Herzegovina 2019-2020 was adopted at the session of the Council of Ministers held on February 24, 2021 with the amendments, in which the Commission for Cooperation with NATO was appointed to replace the previous Commission for NATO Integration Process, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Defense were tasked with drafting the Reform Program of Bosnia and Herzegovina 2020-2021.
The Commission’s name alteration, albeit the result of a compromise made in order to support the adoption of the Reform Program may have been more than symbolic, as it excludes the proactive aspect contained in the integration processes. On the other hand, the name change and the amendments to the content of the Reform Program emphasizing cooperation and eliminating the term integrations, do not contain much significance, as long as the Law on Defense obligates all institutions to undertake the activities for full NATO membership. This leads us to the conclusion that NATO’s evaluation of the self-assessment made by BiH institutions will be a key element that will dictate further progress in the NATO integrations, at least in the short-term period.
5. Economic advantages of NATO membership
Every country aspiring to join NATO is also going through a series of economic reforms within the process of society transformation. This creates a more favorable climate and preconditions for both internal and external investments, and NATO membership also opens up new development opportunities. The implementation of reform processes would directly reflect on country’s rating and send a positive signal to foreign investors to start viewing BiH as a new, safe and interesting destination for investments, and that will certainly lead to a GDP increase.
In all the countries that joined NATO, over time, there was a general progress in all segments of society. This is especially evident in Eastern European countries that, after the Cold War and joining NATO, recorded significant growth and development rates. Thus, in the first year of NATO membership, Albania, although not an EU member, had the investment growth of 39%, Investments also increased in Bulgaria by 47.5% and in Romania by 166.29%. Estonia, despite a 5.72% drop in FDI in the year of accession, recorded a growth of 190.84% in the following year. In the year of accession, Lithuania recorded a 289.38% increase in FDI, and Latvia recorded a 90.07% increase in FDI. The Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary have on average doubled their FDI growth rates since joining NATO.
Joining NATO has had a very positive influence on the growth of gross domestic product/GDP according to the Atlantic Initiative of BiH 2015; in Slovenia GDP grew by 4%, in Slovakia by 5%, in Romania by 8.5%, in Bulgaria by 6.5%. Also, the total foreign investment in Montenegro doubled in the first year following the country joining NATO.
Therefore, it is reasonable to assume that BiH’s membership in NATO would enable prosperity in both general and specific segments (IT, automotive industry, dedicated industry, energy sector, etc.) where BiH has got competitive advantages. This would give small and large companies in Bosnia and Herzegovina the opportunity to do business with the companies that do not enter into business with the companies from the countries that are not members of the Alliance.
It is important to emphasize the participation of Bosnia and Herzegovina in regional economic projects thus far, primarily those initiated and supported by our Western partners who play an important role and create indirect economic benefits with the ultimate goal of creating integrative preconditions for BiH on its Euro-Atlantic path. Bosnia and Herzegovina participates in the regional project of the Adriatic-Ionian Gas Pipeline that runs from Albania, continues through Montenegro and stops near Split in Croatia (all NATO members), with a branch of the “Southern Interconnection” towards Bosnia and Herzegovina. With this, BiH becomes one of the active participants in the gas market of Southeastern Europe, and reduces its dependence from Russian gas. It is solely up to BiH to define its strategic and priority resources in order to achieve economic progress and to recognize the extent to which its Euro-Atlantic integration process can be useful in all this.
Recommendations to NATO and international community:
- the international community should take a categorical stand against the political elites who are slowing down the Euro-Atlantic integration, especially against those who knowingly violate BiH’s defense laws, thus effectively obstructing reform processes;
- NATO Headquarters in BiH should be more involved in the process of advocating NATO integration through public discourse, especially through academia, civil society – independent experts/intellectuals and professional associations (in the field of law, ITC technology, security, international relations, criminology, political science, economics) and the media;
- NATO bodies in Brussels should use their financial and human resources to support the work of civil society representatives in BiH who advocate NATO integration;
- NATO bodies in Brussels should adopt a special Communication Strategy for Bosnia and Herzegovina, taking into account all the specifics of Bosnia and Herzegovina (such as the negative attitude of the Republika Srpska entity, the neighboring Serbia and the Russian Federation) towards Bosnia and Herzegovina’s integration process;
- Bearing in mind the complexity of the process of BiH’s NATO integration, NATO bodies in Brussels should consider, the possibility of establishing a longer mandate for the Commander of NATO Headquarters in BiH, thus enabling the continuity of NATO Commanders’ presence in BiH;
- NATO bodies in Brussels should advocate stronger cooperation and unhindered NATO integration of BiH in the neighboring NATO member countries (Croatia and Montenegro), as well as in the neighboring countries that are not NATO members, but have established cooperation with NATO (i.e. Serbia);
- Given the complexity of the structure of the State of Bosnia and Herzegovina, NATO bodies in Brussels should stop insisting on the registration of prospective military property in Bosnia and Herzegovina as a primary requirement on the path of BiH to NATO membership, and to regard it as a continuous process, instead;
- NATO bodies in Brussels should be more involved in the integration of the countries of the Western Balkans, given the growing geopolitical, military and economic influence of the Russian Federation and China in the region;
- NATO members should take into account the significant progress BiH has already made on its path to NATO, especially in the field of defense and armed forces, and to invite BiH to join NATO as soon as possible.
Recommenations for national authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina vis a vis Atlantic integrations:
- to adopt a new communication strategy of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the NATO integration process based on previous quantitative and qualitative researches; this also implies preparation and adoption of the implementation plan for the communications strategy based on the that communications strategy;
- to implement the document Defense Review and to allocate the necessary funds from the Budget of the institutions of Bosnia and Herzegovina for the implementation of the Plan for the Development and Modernization of the Armed Forces of BiH 2017-2027 and to implement the political, defense, security, legal and economic reforms under NATO cooperation programs (PARP,IPP,IPAP, ID and MAP);
- to further encourage, with international partners’ support, the development of other centers of excellence, such as the Peace Support Operations Training Center (PSOTC), which would emphasize the other characteristic capabilities of BiH AF (e.g. Demining Center, EOD Center, and the like) which, as NATO-accredited institutions, would contribute to strengthening the specific capabilities of the AF BiH to participate in peace support operations;
- with regard to building interoperability with NATO, the authorities should work on improving the training and equipment of the members of the Armed Forces of BiH;
- to intensify cooperation and advocacy activities within the program of the American-Adriatic Charter (US – Adriatic Charter), which is chaired by Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2021;
- to consider NATO’s ability to establish a permanent Alliance base in Bosnia and Herzegovina;
- within the reforms of the Armed Forces of BiH, to give priority to the program of building integrity within the Armed Forces of BiH, as well as strengthening the professionalism of its members, in order to achieve the highest possible level of resistance of the defense-military system to any political bias within BiH AF;
- to continuously insist on a regular evaluation of the existing Reform Program and on the preparation of a new annual plan;
- to strengthen the capacity of military-diplomatic missions to NATO;
- to improve the system of economic planning, programming and budgeting at BiH level;
- to strengthen the support of and to implement the activities in the area of economic diplomacy in BiH in order to maximize the creation of a positive image of BiH among the European and foreign investors;
- to involve the representatives of the academic community, civil society – independent experts / intellectuals and professional associations (in the fields of law, ITC technology, security, criminology, political science, economics) in the Commission for Cooperation with NATO with the aim of building partnerships and active cooperation.