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Luik: The European Union must support military mobility

6. March 2020 - 9:44
EU Ministers of Defence met in Zagreb.
EU Ministers of Defence met in Zagreb.

The European Union must support the development of military mobility, thereby enhancing the capabilities of both European countries and strategic partners to quickly and seamlessly deploy their forces.

‘This spring, the United States will be organising the large-scale exercise Defender 2020, during which more than 20,000 soldiers will be transported across the Atlantic Ocean to Europe’, said Luik. ‘This will be a good way to identify any bottlenecks in military mobility and Europe must help contribute to removing them.'

EU Ministers of Defence met in Zagreb, where they discussed the current state of the European Union’s defence policy, including EU operations in Mali and the Central Mediterranean, the need to increase EU capabilities and to strengthen relations with strategic partners, defence initiatives during EU budget negotiations, and a strategic review of Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO).

This was the first meeting to be led by Josep Borrell, the new High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

On the periphery of the meeting, Minister of Defence Luik met with Thierry Breton, the European Commissioner for Internal Market and Services, who is also responsible for the newly created Directorate-General for Defence Industry and Space. The Minister and the Commissioner emphasised the EU’s opportunities to support the development of innovative and high-tech capabilities.

A meeting was also held between Defence Ministers who are members of the European People's Party (EPP), chaired by Minister of Defence Luik, and attended by the Minsters of Defence of Austria, Croatia, the Netherlands, Greece, Cyprus, Romania and Germany. The need to increase defence cooperation funding in the next European Union budget, military mobility and hybrid threats were discussed at the meeting.

Additional information: press[at]kaitseministeerium[dot]ee