Over ten years of hard work and increasing cooperation between Blue Shield International and NATO bore additional fruit this week as Professor Peter Stone signed off on an Action Plan between Blue Shield and NATO’s Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE).
The Action Plan outlines how the two organisations will work together over the next three years and builds on the Letter of Intent signed between Blue Shield and SHAPE in June 2020. As well as identifying specific exercises and training in which Blue Shield staff will introduce cultural property protection (CPP) issues, the Plan establishes that Blue Shield will provide consultative support and expertise to help NATO’s progressive incorporation of CPP into its military planning and operations and with the design and drafting of NATO’s emerging CPP Policy. BSI was pleased to support the inaugural discussions at the ‘Cultural Property Protection and NATO: Experiences, Practices and Trends’ Event in February 2023, hosted by the Special Representative for Women, Peace, and Security.
NATO is the first multi-national regional alliance to develop its response to CPP in this way. Blue Shield International looks forward to working with other similar organisations globally as the importance and value of cultural property to military operations is acknowledged more widely.