Minister Krstičević attends joint EU defence and foreign ministers meeting
The Croatian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Damir Krstičević on 6 March 2017 attended the joint meeting of defence and foreign ministers of the European Union.
The ministers reviewed the progress in the implementation of the Council's November 2016 conclusions on the implementation of the EU Global Strategy for the Foreign and Security Policy and adopted the Conclusions on the progress of the implementation. The meeting was preceded by an informal meeting in the defence minister format dedicated to a wider strategic discussion on the EU engagement within the Common Security and Defence Policy.
The joint session of defence and foreign ministers was held within the Foreign Affairs Council, to review the progress of the implementation of the Council's conclusions from November 2016 and providing further guidance. The focus was on three proposals for further enhancement of the European defence, namely the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO), the Co-ordinated Annual Review on Defence (CARD) and the Military Planning and Conduct Capability (MPCC).
The three initiatives aim at a more effective building of defence capabilities and capacities to enhance the role of the EU in security and defence through a closer co-operation of the EU members.
Minister Krstičević expressed the support by the Republic of Croatia to the three initiatives but noted that when defining the modalities of implementation transparency, a major and adequate role of the member nations and the complementarity with NATO had to be taken into account, as well as wise management of the restricted funds and of structures and tasks to avoid duplication.
During the discussion on the Common Security and Defence Policy Minister Krstičević emphasised that the EU needed to continue the efforts in the operations aimed at further stabilisation of the neighbourhood, with the focus on the migrations and terrorism as two major challenges.
The Minister called for an enhanced engagement of the EU in southeast Europe, in view of the recent upsetting events in the region. “The EU and NATO need to act more proactively against the security threats and with regard to the European agenda of the countries of southeast Europe. A stronger co-ordination and close co-operation of the EU and NATO provide a credible response to the current threats to the stability and peace in the EU“.
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