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Foreign Affairs Council: Main results (defence) - 15 November

EU News 366/2016

Council of the European Union

EU-NATO cooperation
The Council had a discussion on EU-NATO cooperation with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. Ministers of defence took stock of the cooperation between the EU and NATO in the context of the implementation of the EU global strategy on security and defence and of the EU-NATO joint declaration.  The High Representative and the NATO Secretary General informed on the ongoing work in this regard, where 40 concrete proposals are being developed in the seven areas identified in the joint declaration for deepening cooperation. The proposals are expected to be presented and adopted at the respective Councils of the two organisations in early December. EU ministers underlined the need for comprehensive EU-NATO coordination and complementarity and the commitment of the EU to a strong transatlantic relationship.

CSDP operations
The Council then discussed the state of play of the CSDP operations, focusing on the situation in Libya and the Mediterranean. The NATO SG was also present for this discussion. In this context, the ongoing cooperation between the EU naval operation  to combat smugglers and traffickers in the Central Mediterranean EUNAVFOR MED Operation Sophia, and NATO Operation Sea Guardian on situation awareness and logistics was of particular relevance.

The High Representative also updated ministers on the two supporting tasks of EUNAVFOR MED Operation Sophia. The training of 78 embarked Libyan Navy coastguards and Navy and their mentor is ongoing. The operation is also contributing to the implementation of the UN arms embargo on the high seas off the coast of Libya in accordance with the UN Security Council resolution 2292 (2016), conducting already its first boat-inspection in this framework on 14 September 2016, having checked 7 merchant vessels and queried 122 in this framework.

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