‘More Europe, not less’ needed on security and defence

As the EU situation continues to get worse, the only consistent solution Europe has thought up and pushed for has been to further consolidate. The world’s next superpower is bringing its European Army with it.

An effective European security and defence policy would allow the EU to ‘project influence globally’, argues Maria Eleni Koppa.

European security and defence is a topic that has been attracting a lot of attention after the decision of the European council to hold a special discussion dedicated on security and defence – for the first time since 2008 – at the forthcoming December summit. In this context, on 21 November, the European parliament adopted the report on the implementation of European security and defence policy, concerning the positions of the parliament for the future of the common security and defence policy (CSDP).

The main message that we want to send is that defence really matters. European security and defence policy must be more effective and member states must establish closer cooperation. Defence and security is an area where the solution is more Europe, not less.

The big challenge here is the implementation of the ‘comprehensive approach’, while at the same time overcoming the duplication and fragmentation of various instruments and policies. This could be achieved by enhancing cooperation between the European external action service, the commission, the European defence agency (EDA) and national structures. We must continue to be ambitious, as the CSDP is the only way for the strategic autonomy of Europe, guaranteeing its role as a global actor.

An effective CSDP can guarantee our citizens’ well-being, prosperity and welfare. For that reason we ask for a European Union which will protect and provide security to its neighborhood and which will simultaneously be capable of exercising influence globally, in those particular places where our values for international peace and global security, with respect for human rights, international law and effective multilateralism, are at stake. The EU has at its disposal a full range of civilian and military crisis management tools, in the context of Lisbon Treaty, but it remains regrettable that the EU does not take full advantage of them.

At the next meeting of the European council, heads of state and government must show their decisiveness in order to guarantee a secure, prosperous and sustainable future for the EU. This European council must not be an isolated event, but the starting point of a continuous process also with a sense of direction. Parliament demands concrete deliverables.

Full article: ‘More Europe, not less’ needed on security and defence (The Parliament)

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