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Defence Ministers of the European Union to discuss the creation of a military headquarters
27 September 2016 – Proposals for enhancing defence related cooperation between European Union Member States are being discussed at the informal meeting of the defence ministers of the European Union, taking place today in Bratislava. One of the proposed ideas is the creation of a European Union military headquarters.
EU military operations are currently being directed from five international headquarters, located in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy and Greece. According to the proposal, submitted by Germany and France, mission control would be consolidated into a single headquarters.
According to Minister of Defence Hannes Hanso, Estonia supports closer military cooperation between European Union Member States. “EU military operations, in which Estonia is also participating, are a good example of how the countries of Europe can together assert themselves when it comes to the field of security,” said Hanso before the meeting of ministers. “If the creation of a military headquarters allows EU Member States to cooperate more efficiently in the matter of defence, the proposal is worth considering.”
According to Hanso, Estonia proceeds from whether all new initiatives in the field of defence, which are made within the framework of the European Union, must provide clear added value to the cooperation taking place within NATO. “The European Union should not duplicate what is already being done by NATO.”
The ministers of defence are meeting today in Bratislava, capital of Slovakia, which also currently holds the presidency of the EU, where they will be discussing the implementation of the foreign and security strategy of the European Union, European Union and NATO cooperation, and EU military operations in the Mediterranean and the Sahel region of Africa.
Minister of Defence Jüri Luik met today, in Tokyo, with Japanese Minister of Defence Itsunori Onodera, in order to discuss bilateral defence cooperation and questions related to international security. This was the first trip to Japan by Estonia’s Minister of Defence.