Survey of Czech-US treaties linked to radar base

A review of bilateral treaties connected with the Czech-U.S. negotiations on the U.S. missile defence radar base to be stationed in the Czech Republic, according to the defence and foreign ministries.

  • 1) Treaty between the Czech Republic and the United States on the establishment of a radar base in the Czech Republic (main treaty):

    • is a basic international legal tool for the stationing of the radar system of the U.S. missile defence shield on Czech soil;

    • its aim is to determine the rights and commitments for both sides concerning the building and operation of the U.S. radar base in the Czech Republic and main parametres of its functioning;

    • regulates the radar relation to NATO as well as its construction, command and control;

    • the treaty was approved by the Czech government on May 21, 2008, and signed by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg on July 9, 2008;

    • both houses of parliament must approve the treaty and president must ratify it in the Czech Republic.

  • 2) Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) between the Czech Republic and the United States on the legal status of U.S. troops on Czech soil:

    • specifies the legal status of and conditions for U.S. soldiers on Czech soil;

    • talks on its contents have ended these days, its text is complete, according to the Defence Ministry, but some details, such as proofreading, must yet be tuned up;

    • both houses of parliament must approve the treaty and president must ratify it in the Czech Republic.

  • 3) Agreement between the Czech and U.S. governments on cooperation in missile defence area (framework agreement):

    • enables Czech businesspeople to take part in the building of the U.S. missile defence system and facilitates their access to U.S. market;

    • both countries' experts completed the agreement's text on July 9, 2008;

    • the Czech government must yet approve the agreement.

  • 4) Agreement between the Czech and U.S. governments on industrial security:

    • it is an implementing provision to the bilateral agreement on measures to protect classified military information which the Czech Republic and the United States signed in 1995;

    • it is to secure the protection of classified information in contractual relations of the Czech Republic and the United States with industry;

    • expert negotiations on it are underway;

    • the government must approve it, it is part of the National Security Office's (NBU) agenda.

  • 5) Agreement between the Czech Defence Ministry and the U.S. Department of Defense on research, development, test and assessment projects:

    • it is to create a legal framework for cooperation in defence research, development and testing;

    • both sides have already launched the respective talks.

  • 6) Czech-U.S. agreement on mutual provision of material and services for defence purposes (Procurement Agreement):

    • should balance position of Czech defence industry in its access to defence orders;

    • representatives of both countries have not yet decided whether the treaty will be concluded.

  • 7) Strategic dialogue:

    • both countries launched strategic dialogue by their diplomatic notes from February;

    • it comprises consultations on international security issues, including threats of a missile attack and international terrorism;

    • the Czech Republic launched strategic dialogue with the United States on September 4 during a visit by Czech deputy foreign minister Tomas Pojar to the United States.

  • 8) The Czech Academy of Sciences received a draft agreement from the U.S. Northrop Grumman Space and Missions Systems company on the exchange of confidential information as a pre-condition for further cooperation. It is not an international treaty.

    [Source: Prague Daily Monitor, Prague, 05Sep08]

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