About: European defence

Bulgarian PM: Pilots tell me F-16 is best

Bulgaria needs a plane capable not only of patrolling, but conducting combat operations and winning, and that means buying F-16s, Prime Minister Boyko Borissov told journalists on Friday (14 December), adding that he didn’t want to influence an ongoing tender in the country.

EU greenlights new wave of military projects, secret agents training

Foreign and defence ministers on Monday (19 November) agreed on 17 new armaments and military projects within the PESCO framework, including the development of new weapons systems and the establishment of a training facility for secret agents.

Stoltenberg opposes EU defence duplicating NATO, Putin likes the idea

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg warned Europe against undermining transatlantic ties, following a defence spat between US President Donald Trump and French leader Emmanuel Macron.

Macron calls for ‘true European army’ to defend against Russia, US, China

French President Emmanuel Macron called on Tuesday (6 November) for a "real European army" to allow the bloc to defend itself against Russia and even the United States, a hugely sensitive idea amongst EU nations which jealously guard their defence.

Belgium to buy US F-35 fighters in blow to EU’s defence policy

Belgium said Thursday (25 October) it had chosen to buy US-made F-35 stealth warplanes over the Eurofighter Typhoon, which critics call a blow to the EU's bid to build its own defences.

With Brexit looming, Germany and Britain ramp up defence cooperation

Britain signed a military cooperation agreement with Germany on Friday (5 October), emphasising London's commitment to helping shield Europe from future security threats at a time when negotiations over its own exit from the EU are reaching a crunch time.

Battle rages over EU defence pact

A diplomatic tussle has broken over the European Union's flagship defence cooperation pact, amid warnings that the bloc could cut itself off from major allies like the US and post-Brexit Britain.
Defence policy 28-08-2018

German foreign minister brands Trump’s EU policy ‘irritating’

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas again took aim at US President Donald Trump's foreign policy in a speech on Monday, branding his policies towards Europe "irritating".
Defence policy 23-07-2018

Time for a European Defence Union

The case needs to be made for a back-up security order in Europe - guaranteed by Europe, alas without the US, writes Robert Steenland.

Britain unveils fighter jet model to rival Franco-German programme

Britain unveiled a model of a sleek proposed fighter jet named Tempest yesterday (16 July), raising questions about the future of European defence cooperation, given that Germany and France launched their own fighter jet programme a year ago.

Military industry fund could encourage development and export of controversial weaponry

The EU is about to agree a shared military industry fund which will give billions to arms companies and exacerbate the global arms race. Presented as a key step to strengthen the EU, instead, it enshrines renewed prevalence of national interests in a hard-security context, writes Laëtitia Sédou.

US pushes NATO to ready more forces to deter Russian threat

The United States is pressing its European allies to get more NATO battalions, ships and planes ready for combat, officials say, in a fresh move to shore up NATO’s deterrence against any Russian attack.

White smoke for first-ever EU defence industry fund

The new European Defence Industrial Development Programme, with a €500 million budget for 2019-2020, was informally agreed by MEPs and Council on Tuesday night (22 to 23 May).

EU post-Brexit defences starting to take shape

A broad European military strategy involving Britain after Brexit has started to take shape with France at its centre, often in negotiations far from the Brussels spotlight and, in one top-level EU meeting, without the UK defence minister.

EU defence gets €20 billion budget boost

The EU on Wednesday (2 May) announced plans to spend nearly 20 billion euros on defence over its next long-term budget, as the bloc seeks to boost its resilience to the perceived threat from Russia.

German air defence unit put under Dutch control as military ties deepen

The German military on Wednesday (4 April) put a short-range air defence unit with about 450 soldiers under Dutch command, further deepening ties between the two NATO allies.

EU defence ministers hold ‘historic’ first meeting in PESCO format

EU defence ministers yesterday (6 March) held their first meeting in the 'PESCO format'. This means that, although ministers from all EU member states were present, only those participating in the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) pact were involved in adopting legal acts.
Global Europe 08-02-2018

EU, NATO face growing threat of inadvertent military clash, report says

The erosion of arms control agreements, deployment of additional weapons and tensions over military exercises have increased the risk of an inadvertent armed clash between Europe and Russia, according to the 2018 Munich Security Report published today (8 February). 
Future of mobility 19-01-2018

More space for more Europe

2018 will be a crucial year to shape a stimulating new narrative for EU space policy. Jean-Loic Galle lists a couple of key points ahead of the 10th EU space policy conference taking place in Brussels on 23 and 24 January.
Politics 29-11-2017

European military cooperation: How to defend Europe?

23 European member states agreed to work closer together in military terms. But the cooperation of defence contractors could cause some problems – especially between Berlin and Paris. EURACTIV Germany's media partner Der Tagesspiegel reports.
Global Europe 28-11-2017

NATO visionaries: Artificial intelligence has huge potential for future military capacity

The GLOBSEC NATO Adaptation Initiative, led by retired General John R. Allen, presented on Monday (27 November) its final report on the future of the Alliance. In a wide-ranging interview, EURACTIV.com spoke to General Allen and Ambassador Alexander Vershbow, former Deputy Secretary-General of NATO.
Future EU 23-11-2017

Time to re-energise Europe

Europe must not stand still and the Leaders Agenda is a step in the right direction. But we must seize the current window of opportunity to re-energise the EU by tackling multiple issues at once, argue Herman Van Rompuy and Janis A. Emmanouilidis.
EU Priorities 2020 20-11-2017

Bulgarian President: I may be a general, but I don’t like warlike rhetoric

In a wide-ranging interview, Bulgarian President Rumen Radev, whose country takes over the EU's  rotating six-month Presidency in January, discussed European policies, the upcoming Bulgarian Presidency, and  his contradictions with Prime Minister Boyko Borissov.
Global Europe 16-11-2017

Support for arms industry will not make the world a safer place

The proposal by the European Commission for a European Defence Fund signifies an unprecedented acceleration in the militarization of the European Union. The only one who stands to benefit is the arms industry – and its capacity to export. It is time the European Parliament wakes up and stops any further attempts to support the arms industry, says Bram Vranken.