High Representative Federica Mogherini has proposed today an Implementation Plan on Security and Defence, to turn into action the vision set out in the EU Global Strategy. The Plan has been welcomed by the European Union's Foreign and Defence Ministers gathered in Brussels, and will be presented to the EU's Heads of State and Government at the next European Council in December 2016.
In a letter to all EU Ministers for Foreign Affairs and Defence ahead of the meeting Federica Mogherini wrote: "For most Europeans security is a top priority today. And they know far too well that, amidst the deep uncertainty that surrounds us, we are safer and stronger when we work together, as a true Union."
The High Representative stressed that the Implementation Plan comes one year after France invoked European solidarity following the terrorist attacks in Paris, and less than four months after the presentation of the EU Global Strategy. She explained: "This is no time for theoretical or abstract discussions on European defence. (The Plan) is about doing concrete things, as of tomorrow, together."
The Implementation Plan sets out a Level of Ambition for the European Union's Security and Defence, focused on three priorities: enabling the European Union to respond more comprehensively, rapidly and decisively to crises; enhancing further the security and defence capacities of our partners; and strengthening the European Union's capacity to protect European citizens, working in a coherent and integrated manner on our internal and external security.
The Implementation Plan describes a set of concrete actions to enable the EU and its Member States to fulfil this Level of Ambition, in full complementarity with NATO and in the framework of the UN system. These proposals include improving the EU’s Rapid Response to crises, strengthening coordination between civilian and military structures, setting up a Coordinated Annual Review of Defence spending, and exploring the potential of a Structured Cooperation among Member States on security and defence.