Leaders watch their flags as they participate in a NATO Summit Session One
Leaders watch their flags as they participate in a NATO Summit Session OneReuters

Nato is to establish a rapid response force "to be deployed anywhere in the world" within a few days.

The exact detail will be decided upon after the Nato Summit has ended but the force will include several thousand land troops, who are ready to deploy within a few days with sea, air and special forces support.

UK Prime Minister David Cameron has already pledged 3,500 troops to the new Readiness Action Plan (RAP) forces, as well as signing up to an additional Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF) with Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, which could see an extra 10,000 military personnel mobilised at short notice, from the seven nations.

Nato will also establish a more visible, permanent in Eastern Europe, including a command and control base in an unspecified allied country. IBTimes UK understands Poland, which has just emerged as the host of the next summit in two years, is likely to host such a headquarters.

The bloc is to reposition equipment, set up intelligence sharing, cooperate defence plans and organise more short-notice exercises in Eastern Europe in an effort to improve its readiness.

"This sends a clear message: Nato protects all allies at all times. It sends a clear message to any potential aggressor. Should you even think of attacking one ally, you will be facing the whole alliance," Nato Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen told reporters.

"Our RAP is meant to defend Nato countries. It is fully in line with our international commitments and it will ensure that Nato remains strong, ready, robust and responsive to meet present and future challenges from wherever they come."

Other Agreements

The 28 members of Nato also announced they had reached a consensus on cyber defence, which means anyone who launches a cyber-attack on a Nato member state risks violating Article 5 of its charter, which would, in effect, see the other members react against it.

It will launch training programmes with "allied states", namely Jordan, Georgia and Moldova, with a view to strengthening their military capacity.

This is in addition to the announcement on 4 September that it would provide financial and technical assistance to Ukraine's army, with individual member states committing to providing high-precision arms to the government in Kiev.

Rasmussen said that while no such request has been made with regard Iraq, Nato would "seriously consider" any invitation to provide defence capability training to the Iraqi army.

But he refused to be drawn on the possibility of launching Nato-led military strikes, saying such action has not been discussed (nor invited) and that Nato fully supports the unilateral action of individual member states.

Member states have, however, agreed to increase the exchange of intelligence on fighters returning from abroad.

In a message that will no doubt resonate in political circles in Moscow, the organisation has reaffirmed its expansionary policy. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko told journalists he will next week introduce a bill in Ukraine's parliament in an effort to remove its neutrality – or non-bloc – clause, which means it cannot accede to Nato.

"The open door policy has been a historic success for Nato, it's allowed us to move towards a Nato whole, free and at peace. Nato's door remains open. Each country will continue to be judged on its merit and no third country has a veto over a Nato alliance. Each aspirant has work to do in different areas and we will give them the support they need," Ramussen said.

Already, moves have been made to fast-track the membership of Georgia and Montenegro, with the former likely to prove much more controversial, given its chequered history with Russia. It's thought a decision will be made on Montenegrin membership by the end of 2015.