LONDON, March 30th.The sixteenth session of the Military Committee of CENTO - the Central Treaty?
LONDON, March 30th.The sixteenth session of the Military Committee of CENTO - the Central Treaty Organisation aired at ensuring the stability and security of the Middle East - opened today in London.
Representatives of the five nations concerned - Pakistan, Turkey, Iran, Britain, and the United States - met at Lancaster House in London.Led by the Chairman, Earl Mountbatten of ??? - chief of Britain's defence staff - they entered the magnificent main hall for the opening ceremony.
At the top of the staircase which was lined by detachments from Britain's armed forces, the flags of CENTO and its members were raised.CENTO formerly the Baghdad Pact, has its origins in the nineteen fifty five agreement between Turkey and Iraq for mutual co-operation against aggression and subversive penetration.Pakistan and Iran acceded to the pact soon after Britain had decided to join.The Military Committee - this time chaired by Earl Mountbatten - meets twice a year.Iran's delegation is led by General Hedjazi, the Iranian defence chief - it's at the level of Chiefs of Staff that the Committee meets.The Pakistan delegation is led by General Mohammad Musa - a soldier of wide experience who rose from the ranks.
Turkey is the sole remaining founder member - Iraq acceded after the nineteen fifty eight revolution.General Cevdet Sunny is Chief of the Turkish General Staff.
The United States is not a signatory member of CENTO but takes a full part in the work of the organisation.Admiral David McDonald, Chief of US Naval operations chaired the American team.
Vice-Admiral Sir Ronald Brookman is Britain's chief spokesman at the meeting.The Military Committee exists primarily to co-ordinate CENTO's military planning, and after this session will tour Service units and installations in the United Kingdom.