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Meetings Calendar 2006
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Press Releases

06.03.2006

Platter: Security and defence policy a future pillar of the EU

EU Defence Ministers meet in Innsbruck

 

“The security and defence policy is a unifying pillar for the future of the European Union”, Council President Günther Platter said today, Monday, at the informal meeting of defence ministers in Innsbruck. “We have been working today to ensure that this motor of the EU will continue to function smoothly in future as well.” The themes of Monday’s two sessions were civil-military interaction and the EU operations.

“A mission which sows the seeds of peace and stability in the long term includes both civil and military actors”, Platter stressed. The coordinated deployment of civil and military instruments in the area of the European Security and Defence Policy in particular was therefore crucial. Civil-military coordination was a priority of the three successive presidencies of the UK, Austria and Finland. “That means continuity over the term of three presidencies.”

According to Platter, disaster response is a particularly important area of civil-military interaction. There is firm backing from EU defence ministers on two points. “Military assets will be used for disaster response. The civil-military cell in the EU military staff will coordinate the military contribution to make speedy assistance possible", the Council President stated. “We aim for rapid response times, coordination at EU level and transport coordination”.

On the subject of EU operations Platter said: “The European Union is in a position to ensure stable, safe conditions anywhere in the world”. It had demonstrated this on several occasions. “As far as the quality of the operations is concerned, we are gearing up for tougher requirements.”

The EUFOR/Althea operation was a very successful EDSP mission in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Platter said: “Althea is giving the local people hope of peace, hope of a life in stability and security.” In addition, the EU was assuming its responsibility for Africa; that was why the EU action plan for Africa had also been a subject of discussion. Moreover, a general EU mission in the Congo was a separate item on the agenda for the meeting tomorrow, Tuesday.

 

Date: 06.03.2006