What is the importance of the SEEBRIG for the European countries in general and for the South-Eastern European countries in particular?
The SEEBRIG is a regional, multinational and military organization, made up by 6 European countries
( Nation 1 , Nation 2 , Nation 3 , Nation 5 , Nation 6 , Nation 7 )
and was activated on 31 August 1999, in Plovdiv, Nation 2, the first location of HQ. After the period 1999-2003 in Plovdiv, Nation 2, 2003-2007 in Constanta, Nation 6, 2007-2011 in Istanbul, Nation 7, in July 2011 SEEBRIG HQ was relocated in Larissa, Nation 3 for the next 9 years. For Europe the presence of SEEBRIG is very important because the purpose of this multinational structure, according to the MPFSEE Agreement, is to contribute to the regional security and stability and to foster good neighborly relationships among the countries in South – Eastern Europe, in the context of SEDM process, under the auspices of Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) and in the spirit of Partnership for Peace (PfP). Also this multinational brigade represents an instrument in crisis solving by its participation in peace-keeping operations and humanitarian assistance, assuming a part of the European effort to ensure peace and security on this continent. In this respect, the SEEBRIG and implicitly the entire SEDM process, represents a dialogue and cooperation partner with the European and Euro-Atlantic structures of cooperation and security. From the regional point of view, SEDM process and SEEBRIG is a politico-military instrument, but also a symbol. They have been created to promote regional stability and security, to foster political and military trust, as well as to develop the military cooperation in the area. It is a great accomplishment for this region so historically “troubled” and divided for a long time, to be part in this regional European effort.
In the past we succeeded in creating a multinational brigade, which is operational in the present, a fact that seemed imaginaryÂ twenty years ago.
– We established a multinational headquarters with officers and NCO from NATO and PfP countries, who work after NATO standards and procedures.
– During these 20 years, the SEEBRIG conducted and participated in all exercises, thing that almost exceeds the capability of a multinational brigade headquarters. The exercises included a lot of fields, especially for the purpose of SEEBRIG establishment, which is the participation in peace-keeping operations and in humanitarian assistance. The exercises were developed at headquarters level and computer assisted exercises, at engineering level, signal level but also NATO/NATO PFP exercises.
– We conducted successfully the relocations of the headquarters from one country to another, respectively from Nation 2 to Nation 6, from Nation 6 to Nation 7 and from Nation 7 to Nation 3.
– SEEBRIG is trained and is ready to assume all the responsibilities for which it was created.
– In 1999, SEEBRIG conducted one exercise.
– In 2000, SEEBRIG conducted one exercise.
– In 2001, SEEBRIG conducted 3 exercises.
– In 2002, SEEBRIG conducted 3 exercises and participated in 4 exercises.
– In 2003, SEEBRIG conducted 2 exercises and participated in 2 exercises.
– In 2004 SEEBRIG conducted one exercise, SEVEN STAR-04 exercise, which was the end of NATO assessment of SEEBRIG and participated in other 5.
– In 2004, we have completed the NATO evaluation process and we have been certified as ready with limitations.
– In 2005, SEEBRIG conducted 2 exercises and participated in other 3.
– In 2006, SEEBRIG participated in one exercise.
– In 2007, SEEBRIG conducted 2 exercises and participated in other 2.
– In 2008, SEEBRIG conducted one exercise and participated in other 3.
– In 2009, SEEBRIG conducted 2 exercises and participated in other 2
– In 2010, SEEBRIG conducted 2 exercises and participated in other 2.
– In 2012, SEEBRIG conducted 1 exercise and participated in another 1.
– In 2014, SEEBRIG conducted 1 exercise and participated in another 1.
– In 2015, SEEBRIG conducted 1 exercise and participated in another 1.
– In 2016 SEEBRIG conducted 1 exercize and participated in another 1.
– In 2017 SEEBRIG participated in 4 exercises.
– In 2018 SEEBRIG participated in 6 exercises.
Moreover, between 06 February and 06 August 2006, the SEEBRIG HQ was deployed in the mission, as Kabul Multinational Brigade HQ, under ISAF Command, accomplishing the first SEEBRIG mission.
-The MPFSEE aim, established by the participating countries, is to contribute to the regional security and stability and to foster good neighborly relationships among the countries in South-Eastern Europe.
-In the present, efforts are made so that both headquarters and units should be ready for future peace-keeping operations and including humanitarian assistance.
-SEEBRIG is conducting activities to carry out the NATO assessment criteria.
SectionHow SEEBRIG will be available for possible deployment and employment and how SEEBRIG is going to participate in NATO-led mission?
SEEBRIG is available for possible employment in UN or OSCE-mandated NATO-led or EU-led conflict prevention and other peace support operations . It can also participate in “coalition of the willing” type international initiatives. SEEBRIG also functions “within the spirit” of PfP.
The decision for participation in operations and deployments, initially to be proposed by the Politico-Military Steering Committee (PMSC), is subject to political and military consultation and approved by SEEBRIG countries through their respective national legal procedures.
After the joint case-by-case political decision is made for participation in operations and for the deployment of SEEBRIG, member countries must make their contributions available for SEEBRIG within the time frame proposed by the relevant authorities and decided by the PMSC. Participation in a particular force “package” for a specific operation is a purely national preference.
Tasks to be undertaken by SEEBRIG and the Rules of Engagement (ROE) are derived from the resolutions of the international organization which has undertaken a given operation and are subject to approval of the SEEBRIG countries, based on the proposals by the PMSC.
NATO-led or EU-led peace support operations, SEEBRIG is subordinated to the bodies delineated in the mandate of the relevant international organization after the SEEBRIG countries have agreed to undertake such operation. The military body under which SEEBRIG will function is jointly decided by the SEEBRIG countries.
SEEBRIG Disaster Relief Operations Concept (SEEDRO CONCEPT) describes the Concept for SEEBRIG’s ETF role in Disaster Relief Operations (DRO).
SEEBRIG Generic Deployment Plan (GDP) describes the steps, actions and responsibilities, which need to be considered basically by HQ SEEBRIG and affiliates units, during deployment.
SEEBRIG Generic Operations Plan (GOP) describes the concept of operations, responsibilities and procedures for SEEBRIG in case of having a Mission in Peace Support Operation (PSO). It is applicable to all units and national agencies, performing SEEBRIG related activities.
SEEBRIG has participated in NATO-led mission ISAF (The International Security Assistance Force), between 06 February and 06 August 2006. SEEBRIG conducted its first mission, as Kabul Multinational Brigade, under ISAF Command.
– Political and military decisions and discussions are made at the meetings of Foreign Affairs Ministers, Defence Ministers, Chiefs of Staff and PMSC. PMSC is constituted as an executive joint body, for political survey and orientation for the participation in operations and for the deployment of the Force. The decision regarding the participation in the operations, which is initially proposed by PMSC, will be subject to the political and military discussions, and will be approved by the parties according to their legal national procedures. Each country designated for PMSC a delegation, led by a senior representative who is advised by experts in this field. PMSC chairmanship shifts once in two years among the members of the Committee.
– PMSC meetings take place regularly or whenever it is necessary to carry out the responsibilities, as well as upon the request of one party or of the chairman.
– The regular meetings take place twice a year, in the spring and in autumn, being hosted by the country which holds the chairmanship and undertakes at the same time the responsibility of the secretariat.
– All the decisions are made through the consensus of the parties.
– According to MPFSEE Agreement signed on September 26th 1998, the numbering system in alphabetic order must be used in order not to raise disputes among the parties.
How is the cooperation among the participating countries in SEEBRIG and the staff (with different political, historical, social, cultural and military training)?
No country can progress without cooperation with other countries.
Success is something people can achieve easier when they cooperate with one another, than running towards it individually. Countries are in need to help each other to go further and faster in the development. No country has all what it needs and every nation needs to be in cooperation with others to be strong and offer its citizens prosperity and happiness. The core of SEEBRIG “heart” is showing the advantages of cooperation between nations.
In the SEEBRIG multinational headquarters there is an atmosphere of understanding and cooperation among the officers and NCOs. The formal relationships comply with the military regulations, these being strictly followed by the SEEBRIG personnel.
The development of the informal relationships among the headquarters members represents a permanent concern of the brigade command. These relationships can be improved by multiple ways. We can refer to the staff activities during “spare time”, in the “entertainment program” which includes “social trips” and “informal trips” with the purpose to bring the staff families together and to create the best friendly relationships.
These exchanges have the potential to impact sub regional and regional integration processes as well as global health policy debates.
SEEBRIG is a Multinational Peace Force South-Eastern Europe (MPFSEE), brigade-size formation established by participating nations in order to contribute to the regional security and stability in the Euro-Atlantic area, and to foster cooperation among the South-Eastern European countries.
SEEBRIG is composed of ground elements only, as no direct participation from air or naval services (except for Tactical Air Control Parties/TACPs) is foreseen. The SEEBRIG will be an “ON-CALL” Land Force, supported by elements from other services, as and if necessary. Units allocated to SEEBRIG will remain at their permanent homebase locations and they will come together to form the appropriate force for exercises/training activities in accordance with jointly prepared programmes, and for contingencies should there be a decision by the SEEBRIG countries to that effect.
The SEEBRIG countries shall designate separate units and/or capabilities along with equipment from the structure of the armed forces in their own countries, which shall be incorporated in the composition of SEEBRIG. The respective units will remain within the national command structure, until such time that they are declared mission-ready and are made subordinate to joint under the command and control of COMSEEBRIG.
The main military units of SEEBRIG are:
– Four Infantry mechanized battalions (Each battalion is composed of infantry mechanized companies, combat support and combat service support units. Their equipment consists mainly of light infantry weapons and armored transporters for personnel).
– Engineer Task Force (ETF is composed of five engineer companies and one engineer platoon).
The growing dimension, frequency and complexity of disasters, and the increasing number of people affected, demand capability for military as well as civil response. In disasters of great magnitude, national and international relief capacity may be exceeded. Cooperation and Coordination should be a tool for efficiency in to an integrate operation.
Engineering Task Force (ETF) has been established by the MPFSEE countries in accordance with the Second Additional Protocol (signed on 30th of November 1999) to the MPFSEE Agreement.
The scope of the formation of the ETF is to provide the Parties with an emergency relief and humanitarian intervention capabilities.
ETF is composed of units provided by the Parties under the command and control of COMSEEBRIG.
This initiative shall be oriented towards small-scale civil assistance in the interest of the Parties and ETF shall provide immediate support to local population on a stand alone basis or in conjunction with appropriate international bodies.
ETF shall conduct, subject to national decisions, small cooperation projects in the field of:
a)Limited road construction and repair
b)Limited bridging and bridge repair
c)Limited rail repair
f)Limited de-mining, Unexploded Ordnance clearance
g)Any other agreed functional areas
During crisis operations, a Crisis Engineer Cell (CEC) shall be established, headed by an engineer officer (OF-5) who shall be provided by the COMSEEBRIG’s Country.
Every Party, which participates in a crisis operation, shall provide one engineer officer to the Crisis Engineer Cell. Where possible, the Parties, which will participate in a crisis operation, shall transfer their representative from the Engineer Cell (CG-7) to the Crisis Engineer Cell.
SEEBRIG Disaster Relief Operations Concept (SEEDRO Concept) was approved during the 22nd SEDM-CC-PMSC meeting in Sofia, Na2 and is a document which describes SEEBRIG’s ETF role in DRO.
In order to fit SEEBRIG to DRO requirements, an AD HOC task force will be constituted with the following core assets:
a) SEEBRIG Nucleus staff
b) SEEBRIG HQ Coy
c) SEEBRIG Signal Coy
The need for other units with specific capabilities depending on the DRO needs, skilled personnel, special equipment (both provided by MPFSEE Nations or third parties) and SEEBRIG CE Personnel (if needed) will be determined at the force generation conference and after the FPLT reconnaissance.
The decision for participation or deployment of SEEBRIG in DRO, proposed by PMSC, will be subject to approval by the MPFSEE Nations through their respective national legal procedure.
Possible Disaster Relief Operations can include:
1) Flood response operations
3) Earthquake response operations
4) Manmade Disasters
During this 17 years period, SEEBRIG developed in all exercises, which almost exceeds the capability of a multinational brigade headquarters.
– In 1999 we conducted the first SEEBRIG exercise, the Command Post Exercise CPX SEEBRIG-99.
– In 2000 the Command Field Exercise CFX “SEVENSTARS-00” was developed.
– In 2001 we performed the first Computer Assisted Exercise, CAX-01, the first engineer exercise, “CORNERSTONE-01”, and the exercise “SEVENSTARS-01”.
– In 2002 we conducted CPX “SEVENSTARS-02”, “CORNERSTONE-02” which was an engineer exercise and an exercise for the staff “STAFFEX-02”. The SEEBRIG participated in a simulation and computer assisted exercise, “SEESIM-02” and in other 3 exercises, “SOUTHERN STAR-02”, “ONGUARD” in Nation 7, “COOPERATIVE ADVENTURE EXCHANGE-02” in Ukraine.
– In 2003 we developed an exercise for the engineer force, “CORNERSTONE-03” and a headquarters exercise, “STAFFEX-03” and participated in other 2 exercises “COMBINED ENDEAVOR-03” and “VIKING-03”.
– In 2004, we conducted 1 exercise, Full Operational Capability (FOC) CFX “SEVEN STARS-04” and participated in 5 exercises, “ADRIATIC PHIBLEX-04”, “COMBINED ENDEAVOR-04”, “ALLIED ACTION-04”, “EURASIAN STAR-04” and “SEESIM 04”.
– In 2005 SEEBRIG conducted 2 exercises and participated in 3 exercises. The conducted ones are CPX “SEVEN STARS-05” and “STAFFEX -05”. The participated ones are “COMBINED ENDEAVOR-05”, “PHOENIX ENDEAVOR-05” and “CETATEA-05”.
– In 2006 SEEBRIG participated in 1 exercise, CAX “SEESIM-06”.
– In 2007, SEEBRIG conducted “STAFFEX-07” and CPX “SEVEN STARS-07” and participated in 2 exercises “COMBINED ENDEAVOR-07” and “EURASIAN STAR-07”
– In 2008, SEEBRIG conducted CPX “SEVEN STARS-08” in Istanbul and participated in 3 exercises “COMBINED ENDEAVOR-08”, “BLONDE AVALANCHE-08” and “SEESIM-08”.
– In 2009, SEEBRIG conducted “STAFFEX-09” and participated in three exercises FTX “ANADOLU SAHINI-09” including academic training exercise named “ANADOLU ONCU” and “COMBINED ENDEAVOR-09″.
– In 2010, SEEBRIG conducted ” STAFFEX-10″ and CPX “SEVEN STARS-10” and participated in two exercises CPX “NOBLE JEWEL-10” and “SEESIM-10”.
– In 2012, SEEBRIG conducted CPX “SEVEN STARS-12” and participated in “SEESIM-12″.
– In 2014 SEEBRIG conducted SEVEN STARS 14 linked toÂÂÂÂÂ NATO Exercise TRIDENTÂÂÂÂÂ LANCE 14 and participated SEESIM 14
– In 2015 According to the New Exercise Policy, SEEBRIG conducted SOUTH-EASTERN EUROPE BLUE ANGEL (SEEBA 15) in NA-6 as the main exercise and participated in EURASIAN STAR 15 (EAST15) in NA-7 as the participated exercise.
– In 2016 SEEBRIG conducted Exercise SEVEN STARS – 16 (SS-16) from 23 Oct to 03 Nov 2016 and participated in ”SEESIM – 16” from 10 to 14 Oct 2016.
– In 2017 SEEBRIG participated in 4 exercises “BOSNA I HERCEGOVINA 2017”, from 25 to 29 Sep 2017, ”MAPLE ARCH 2017” from 13 to 17 Nov 2017, ”GORDIAN KNOT 17” from 27 Nov to 07 Dec 2017, ”EURASIAN STAR 17” from 08 to 15 Dec 2017.
– In 2018 SEEBRIG conducted its main exercise SEVEN STARS 18 and participated in other 5 exercises – SEESIM 18, MAPLE ARCH 18, SRBIJA 18, DACIAN LANCER 18 and VALIANT LYNX 18.