The North Atlantic Treaty Organization Medal for Operation Active Endeavour was approved by the North Atlantic Council for members who participated in NATO's operation in the international waters of the Mediterranean Sea, and the airspace above it, following the terrorist attacks on the United States on Sept. 11, 2001. The operation began on Oct. 26, 2001 and is open to a date to be determined. The Deputy Secretary of Defense approved the acceptance and wear of the medal for U.S. military and U.S. civilian personnel. Eligible personnel are those serving, either as individuals or as part of an element of the Standing Naval Force. STANAVFORMED and STANAVFORLANT are the NATO components taking part in this operation. The qualifying period in the Area of Operations is 30 days continuous or accumulated service from Oct. 26, 2001 to a date to be determined. Aircrew members will accumulate one day's service for the first sortie flown of any day in the Area of Operation; additional sorties flown on the same day receive no further credit. This requirement exists for support as well as combat aircraft; support aircraft includes tanker, airlift and surveillance platforms.