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Crisis in Yugoslavia

NATO's First 50 Years

April 25, 1999

A chronology of events during the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's first 50 years:

1949

April 4: Treaty signed in Washington by 12 nations creates the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

July 21: U.S. Senate approves treaty.

Sept. 17: First North Atlantic Council session, in Washington, is chaired by Secretary of State Dean G. Acheson

1950

Dec. 18: NATO foreign ministers approve plans to defend Western Europe, including use of nuclear weapons if necessary.

Dec. 19: Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower is appointed supreme allied commander, responsible for creating a force capable of repulsing a Soviet attack.

1952

Feb. 18: Greece and Turkey join the alliance.

1955

May 5: West Germany joins NATO

May 14: In response to West German troops joining NATO, eight nations form the Warsaw Pact.

1966

March 10: France withdraws forces under NATO command.

1967

Oct. 16: NATO headquarters officially opens in Brussels.

1982

May 30: Spain joins NATO

1990

Nov. 19: NATO and Warsaw Pact sign treaty of nonaggression.

1991

July 1: Warsaw Pact dissolves.

1995

Dec. 20: NATO launches military operation in support of the peace agreement in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

1997

July 8: NATO invites the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland to begin negotiations to become full members.

1999

March 12: The Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland formally join NATO in ceremony at Independence, MO.

March 24: NATO launches military strikes against Yugoslavia.

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