AGREEMENT BETWEEN BELGIUM AND THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA CONCERNING THE
PREPARATION AND OPERATION OF AN AMERICAN LINE OF COMMUNICATION IN BELGIUM
The Government of Belgium
The Government of the United States of America,
Noting the Agreement between the parties to the North Atlantic Treaty regarding
the status of their forces, signed at London June 19, 1951;
Noting the Memorandum of March 14, 1952 between the Government of Belgium and
the Government of the United States of America on relief from taxes and duties;
Noting the Belgian law of April 11, 1962, authorizing the transit through and
stationing in Belgium of troops of nations allied to Belgium under the North
Noting the administrative arrangement signed September 6, 1968 at Brussels and
September 10, 1968 at Heidelberg between the Government of the United States
of America and the Belgian Government concerning prefinancing by the American
forces and possible subsequent reimbursement of NATO common infrastructure projects
in Belgium, for work to be carried out on existing military land, called in
this agreement "Administrative Agreement of 1968";
Considering that the installation, in time of peace, of American depots in
Belgian territory is indispensable to permit the operation, beginning upon the
declaration of a state of simple (niet leesbaar) to ensure the logistic support
of the American (niet leesbaar) the central region of the Allied Command in
Europe for the purpose of achieving the objectives of the North Atlantic Treaty;
Considering that the Belgian government has already undertaken by agreements,
to permit other States Parties to the North Atlantic Treaty to use Belgian territory
for logistic, military, and civil purposes;
Considering the duty of the Belgian Government to give priority to the use
of allocation of its own resources for its essential national requirements,
in all circumstances,
Are agreed as follows:
I. Subject of the Agreement
Under the terms of this agreement, the Government of the United States of America
1. In time of peace:
a. Establish depots for the purpose of the activation and operation of a line
of communication across Belgian territory, for the use of American forces stationed
in the central region of the Allied Command in Europe
b. Station in Belgium American military and civilian personnel for the protection,
maintenance, and operation of these depots
c. Store reserves of equipment, materiel, and supplies at these depots;
d. (niet leesbaar) install communication equipment necessary for peacetime custodial
and maintenance operations and to ensure the functioning of the line of communication.
The specifics of these installations will be the subjects of the technical agreement.
2. In a period of international tension, beginning upon the declaration of
a state of simple alert by the Supreme Allied Commander, Europe, or at a prior
time fixed by mutual agreement by the two Governments, activate and operate
the line of communications and to this end ;
a. Reinforce the personnel of the existing depots;
b. Convey through Belgium reinforcements of personnel, materiel, equipment,
c. To the extent possible at the time, establish and/or use supplementary depots,
bivouac areas, and installations for debarkation, transhipment, reception and
d. Obtain various services.
II. Provision for the Period Preceding the Activation and Operation of the
Line of Communications
1. The number and location of the depots as well as the nature and quantity
of materiel, equipment, and supplies which may be stored within, will be the
subject of technical agreements.
2. The same will be the case for the complement of civilian personnel (American
and Belgian) and of American military personnel who will be charged with the
protection, maintenance, and operation of the depots.
1. For planning purpose:
a. The American military authorities will inform the Belgian military authorities
to the various requirements of the American forces for the period of activation
and operation of the line of communications.
b. The Belgian military authorities will note requirements in their inventory
of national requirements and of other allied requirements
2. The Belgian Government will reserve sites intended for the establishment
of supplementary depots and bivouac areas insofar as these reservations are
compatible with other essential Belgian and allied requirements.
III. Provision for the Period of Activations and Operation of the Line of
The reinforcement of personnel intended, on the one hand, for the protection,
maintenance and operation of the depots and, on, the other hand, for the activation
of the entire line of communications, will be the subject of technical agreements.
At the end of the period of tension, as mentioned in Article 1, paragraph2,
to return to a normal peacetime situation, the United States will withdraw
the additional personnel, materiel, equipment and supplies which it may have
introduced into Belgium to activate and operate the line of communications,
according to dispositions to be taken by common agreement between the two
To the extent possible at the time, the Belgian Government will provide the
Government of the United States of America with the services necessary for
debarkation, transhipment, reception and transit of troops, materiel, equipment
and supplies to or from the central region of the Allied Command in Europe.
The Belgian military authorities will supervise the rendering of such services.
To the extent possible at the time, the Government of the United States of
America may also use, according to terms and conditions fixed by mutual agreement
with the Belgian Government: landing fields at airports, bivouac areas, and
1. The American military authorities may use, according to the terms and
conditions fixed by mutual agreement with the Belgian military authorities,
facilities belonging to the American forces such as:
- Port reception Equipment;
- Electronic transmission equipment;
- Medical installations;
- Bridge-building equipment
2. Furthermore, with the consent of the Belgian Government, the Government
of the United States of America may equip, for the purpose of transhipment,
debarkation, and transit, certain beaches on the Belgian coast as well as
certain sites along waterways.
To the extent possible at the time, the Belgian Government will make available
to the American military authorities, at the request of the (niet leesbaar)
, and all other logistic support.
1. In all circumstances, essential requirements (civilian and military) shall
take priority over allied requirements of every type. The Belgian Government
remains the only judge of exceptions which critical circumstances may justify.
2. In the event that all of the allied military requirements cannot be met
within the desired time concurrently with Belgian civilians requirements and
concurrently with allied civilians requirements indicated as essential, the
various allied military requirements will be met, taking into account the
possibilities at the time, following the order of priorities determined by
the Commander in Chief of the Allied Forces in Central Europe.
Provisions Common to Both Periods
1. The Belgian Government will furnish the assistance of its agencies, such
as they are, to facilitate the execution of this agreement and the technical
agreements specifying the tremens and conditions thereof.
2. This assistance will involve in particular making available depots and
the recruitment, management and discharge of the civilian labor which will
complement American personnel.
3. Debarkations in ports and airports, the movement of American vehicles
and, generally, movements and transportation for American forces will be entirely
subject to the regulations applicable in Belgium.
All real expenses that the Belgian Government may uncut in the execution
of this agreement and the technical agreements specifying the terms conditions
thereof, will be borne by the Government of the United States of America.
The latter will advance the necessary funds.
...of America will remain the property of that Government. It may remove them
at any time without restriction.
1. Installations to be established on lands belonging to the Belgian State
as well modifications to existing installations owned by it, will be constructed
or effected on behalf of and for the account of the Government of the United
States of America.
The Administrative Arrangement of 1968 will be entirely applicable.
2. The procurement of other lands or buildings to be made available to the
American forces will be likewise at the expense of the Government of the United
States of America.
Payment for such procurement will be made in accordance with Article 6 and
7 of the Administrative Arrangement of 1968
The lands will be the property of the Belgian State.
3. In this regard the United States Government shall be under no obligation
to restore any of the land to condition in which it was prior to the time
it was made available for the Line of Communications.
The dispositions of Article 12 are applicable to installations constructed
on these lands at the request of the United States.
If the installations established on these lands become eligible for NATO common
financing; the sums paid for the lands to the Belgian Government will not
be refunded by the latter to the Government of the United States of America.
4. The Government of the United States of America will bear the costs resulting
from the placing at its disposal of lands and installations which do not belong
to the Belgian State or to which title of ownership has not been obtained.
as a prudent administration
maintenance of the lands made available to it, and will have harming animals
destroyed in according with Belgian legislation.
1. In the event that the Government of the United States of America renounces
all or part of the use of the installations which may have been built or modified
at its request, the Belgian Government will decide on their disposition.
2. In the event that the Belgian Government decides to demolish the abandoned
installations to use the land for another purpose, it will not be required
to pay compensation to the Government of the USA. The latter, for its part,
will not have to share the costs of demolition.
3. In the event that the Belgian Government decides to use the abandoned
installations, it will pay, subject to the approval of the legislative branch,
fair compensation to the Government of the USA. This compensation will be
determined by mutual agreement by the two Governments taking into account,
on one hand, the initial condition of the buildings, structures and lands
made available to the Government of the USA and, on the other hand, of the
current condition of the installations constructed at the latter's request.
1. The care of depots, bivouac areas and other installations or sites used
for the line of communications will be ensured by American forces in conformity
with Belgian laws and regulations. The American military authorities may assign
Belgian civilian labor for that purpose, according to terms and conditions
to be agreed upon with the Belgian military authorities.
2. The depots, bivouac areas and other installations or sites will be considered
as Belgian military installations where ground defence is concerned. Therefore,
they will benefit, if necessary and to the extent possible, from clearing
operations by Belgian forces.
1. The military authorities referred to in this agreement are, on one hand,
the Commander of American forces in Europe and, on the other hand, the Chief
of the General Staff of the Belgian armed forces.
These authorities shall be responsible for the execution of the agreement.
They will submit differences that may arise regarding the interpretation of
the agreement to the Ministers of Defence of the two nations. The Ministers
will resolve the differences by mutual agreement.
The military authorities will designate members of their staffs who will represent
them in committees or working groups to which they may assign studies to be
carried out jointly.
Upon consent of both governments, representatives of other parties to the
North Atlantic Treaty may be invited to participate in appropriate meetings
or discussions concerning Line of Communications planning.
2. Differences that may arise regarding the interpretation of the technical
agreements specifying the terms and conditions of execution of this agreement
will be resolved by mutual agreement by the authorities who signed the technical
1. This agreement shall enter into force on the date of its signature.
It shall continue in force as long as each of the parties is bound by obligations
resulting from the North Atlantic Treaty, unless one of the parties denounces
it before ceasing to be bound by the aforesaid Treaty. The denunciation, which
shall be by written notification to the other party, will take effect six
months after the receipt of this notification.
2. This agreement may be revised at the request of one of the parties.
Et en Anglais, les deux textes faisant également foi.
Done at Brussels, the 16th and 19th of July, 1971, in English and French, both
texts being equally authentic.
Pour le Gouvernement belge:
For the Belgian Government:
16 juillet 1971
Pour le Gouvernement des Etats-Unis d'Amérique:
For the Government of the United States of America:
(sé) John SD Eisenhower
July 19, 1971