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Defence ministers discussed security and defence issues and EU-NATO cooperation

EU2019FIMinistry of Defence 12.11.2019 16.04
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Finland’s Minister of Defence Antti Kaikkonen and High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini at the defence ministers’ meeting.
Photo: European Union

EU defence ministers adopted new projects under Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) in their meeting on 12 November. The ministers also reviewed the EU’s military crisis management missions and operations and gave their support to further developing of EU-NATO cooperation.

The Foreign Affairs Council meeting was chaired by High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini. Minister of Defence Antti Kaikkonen represented Finland in the meeting in Brussels.

PESCO projects deepen defence cooperation

The EU has intensified its defence cooperation in recent years. One of the objectives of Finland’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union has been the efficient implementation of existing goals and targets.

The Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) is one example of the EU’s defence initiatives. It aims to deepen defence cooperation and support member states in their developing military capabilities. The defence ministers adopted 13 new PESCO projects.

In their second working session, the defence ministers reviewed the EU’s military crisis management missions and operations. They assessed the current state of deployment and reflected on the challenges and areas for further improvement.

Over lunch, the ministers discussed EU-NATO cooperation with NATO’s Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoană. Finland’s Presidency has stressed the importance of EU-NATO relations and the deepening of cooperation. Currently the cooperation between the EU and NATO focuses on countering hybrid threats and on military mobility and cyber security.

Antti Kaikkonen
European External Action Service
Foreign Affairs Council
NATO
crisis management
defence
safety and security