|E.S.D.P. :Mobilized in the Fight Against Terrorism|
E.S.D.P. : Mobilized in the Fight Against Terrorism
At a working lunch in the Patio de la Infanta at the start of their informal meeting in Zaragoza, the EU Defence Ministers have agreed on the need to mobilise the European Security and Defence Policy, part of the Second Pillar, in the fight against international terrorism. Source: Spanish Ministry of Defense, Madrid, March 22, 2002.
The Fifteen were unanimous in wishing to formalise this step in the Seville European Council declaration.
Noting that Prime Minister Aznar had, at the beginning of this year, launched the debate on making the fight against terrorism an objective of the ESDP, Spanish Defence Minister Federico Trillo-Figueroa proceeded to set out the initiatives being taken by the Spanish Presidency in this area. These involve pushing forward the work entrusted to the EU Institute for Security Studies regarding the basic conceptual features of European defence, with a view to dealing adequately with the fight against terrorism, and making proposals in the European Convention preparing the Intergovernmental Conference in 2004 regarding possible amendment of the Treaty on European Union to expand the Petersberg missions to include military missions.
All the EU Defence Ministers underlined the need to step up capacity and increase investment in defence and security so as to ensure that assistance can be provided in the event of attacks such as those of 11 September.
Four practical measures are to be driven forward immediately. The first concerns co-operation between military intelligence services, the second relates to co-operation and co-ordination on systems to protect against NBC (nuclear, biological and chemical) weapons of mass destruction, the third involves using the new regulation on the single European sky in order to enhance air security and the fourth is analysis to provide better protection of military forces deployed on humanitarian missions.