The key objectives of ALTHEA
- To provide Capacity Building and Training to the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina (AFBiH), supporting them in their progression towards NATO standards
- to provide deterrence and continued compliance with the responsibility to fulfil the role specified in Annexes 1A and 2 of the Dayton/Paris Agreement (General Framework Agreement for Peace in BiH); and
- to contribute to a safe and secure environment in BiH, in line with its mandate, and to achieve core tasks in the OHR's Mission Implementation Plan and the Stabilization and Association Process (SAP).
The EUFOR Mandate
The mandate for EUFOR’s Operation Althea is in two parts, Executive and Non-Executive. The Executive mandate is given by the UN Security Council, and the EUFOR mission is then based on the EU Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) Joint Action which includes an Executive part derived from the UN Security Council (Supporting the BiH authorities maintain a safe and secure environment). It also includes and a Non-Executive part (Capacity Building & Training for the AFBiH). This supports BiH in its progress to being a ‘security provider’ rather than a ‘security consumer’.
United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 1575, adopted unanimously on 22 November 2004, welcomed the EU’s intention to launch an EU military operation in BiH. It authorized the Member States acting through or in cooperation with the EU to establish a multinational stabilization force (EUFOR) as a legal successor to SFOR under unified command and control, which will fulfil its missions in relation to the implementation of Annex 1-A and Annex 2 of the Dayton/Paris Agreement. EUFOR has the main peace stabilization role under the military aspects of the Peace Agreement.
The Resolution also welcomed the EU’s increasing engagement in BiH. EUFOR's mandate was extended by UNSCR 1639 (2005) on 21 November 2005.
UNSC Resolution 1551, adopted unanimously on 9 July 2004, welcomed the EU's intention to launch such a mission.
The decision by the EU to launch ALTHEA follows the decision by NATO to conclude its successful SFOR-operation. ALTHEA is carried out with recourse to NATO assets and capabilities, on the basis agreed with NATO ("Berlin Plus").
In 2012 the Operation reconfigured and changed its focus to Capacity Building and Training of the Armed Forces of BiH. It, nevertheless retained its obligations to support the BiH authorities in maintaining a Safe and Secure Environment
EU Political Objectives
The June 2003 Thessaloniki Declaration confirmed that the future of the Western Balkans is within the EU. The Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA) is the framework for the European integration of BIH, and entered into force on the 1st of June.
The EU has a comprehensive approach within BiH, focusing on Defence and Security, Development and Diplomacy. The EU focuses on reforming state level institutions, and supporting BiH to make economic progress.
EUFOR’s part in the comprehensive approach is to assist in creating the conditions to deliver the long term political objective of a stable, viable, peaceful and multiethnic BIH, co-operating peacefully with its neighbors and irreversibly on track towards EU membership.
The operation reinforces the EU's comprehensive approach towards BIH, and supports BIH's progress towards EU integration by its own efforts. The operation is part of the overall European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP) mission in BIH and of a closely coordinated EU presence in BIH.
The EU Special Representative promotes overall EU political co-ordination in BIH. EU Commanders co-ordinate closely with the EUSR in BIH with a view to ensuring consistency of the EU military operation with the broader context of the EU activities in BIH.