NATO conducts a number of operations that are either directly or indirectly related to the fight against terrorism
Operation Active Endeavour
Operation Active Endeavour (OAE) is a maritime surveillance operation led by NATO's naval forces to undertake anti-terrorist patrol, escort and compliant boarding in the Mediterranean. Initially limited to the Eastern Mediterranean, OAE was extended to the entire Mediterranean from March 2004.
The operation was one of eight measures taken by NATO to support the United States following the September 11 attacks, and is currently NATO's only counter-terrorism operation. OAE is also open to partners wishing to support NATO's operational activities against terrorism.
NATO in Afghanistan
Since August 2003, NATO has been leading the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), in assisting the Government of Afghanistan in expanding its authority and implementing security, thereby, helping to remove the conditions in which terrorism could thrive. While not a counter-terrorism operation, ISAF represents NATO's determination to help the people of Afghanistan build a stable, secure and democratic state free from the threat of terrorism. In addition, many NATO Allies have forces involved in Operation Enduring Freedom, the ongoing US-led military counter-terrorism operation whose major activities are in Afghanistan.NATO in the Balkans
NATO peacekeeping forces in the Balkans continue to help in creating the conditions necessary to restrict potential terrorist activities. Such assistance includes support for stopping the illegal movement of people, arms and drugs that offer important economic sources for the financing of terrorism. NATO forces also work with regional authorities on border security issues.
Securing major public events
NATO also provides assistance in protecting the security of major public events in Allied countries that might attract the interest of terrorists. It does this at the request of any member country by deploying NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Aircraft (AWACS), elements of NATO's multinational chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defence battalion, or other capabilities. The Alliance has thus assisted high-visibility events such as Summits and Ministerial meetings, as well as sporting events such as the Athens Olympic Games.
NATO started to undertake this type of mission after it had provided air surveillance to the United States in 2001 as part of the package of eight measures agreed immediately after the September 11 terrorist attacks. Operation Eagle Assist involved the deployment of NATO AWACS aircraft to the United States from mid-October 2001 to mid-May 2002 to protect the US homeland and enable US assets to be deployed for its campaign in Afghanistan.