Observatory on European defence, May 2014
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: MAY 2-5-6-8
EU: DESIGNATION OF SIX NEW HEAD OF DELEGATION, NEW HEAD OF MISSION FOR EUCAP SAHEL NIGER AND NEW SPECIAL ENVOY FOR LIBYA
2 may: Catherine Ashton has appointed Christian Manahl, Michael Doyle and Antonio Sanchez-Benedito Gaspar Head of EU delegation in Eritrea, Lesotho and Madagascar respectively. Manahl, Austrian diplomat, joined the Commission in 1996 and is now the political counsellor at the European Delegation in Sud Sudan. Michael Doyle is working as Deputy Head of the FPI Unit and is responsible for the Instrument for Stability. He served previously as crisis response planner and within the European Agency for Reconstruction in Kosovo. Gaspar, Spanish Ambassador to Ethiopia from 2008 until 2011, he is currently Ambassador at large for the Sahel.
5 may: David O’Sullivan will be the new Head of the European Union Delegation to the United States of America. Mr. O’ Sullivan has been the Chief Operating Officer of the European External Actions Service since its creation and prior he held a number of positions within the Commission.
6 may: Filip de Ceuninck has been appointed Head of the EU CSDP mission EUCAP SAHEL Niger. Succeeding General Francisco Espinosa Navas who has been leading the mission since it was established in July 2012, Mr de Ceuninck has been interim Head of Mission since November 2013.
8 may: Bernardino León has been appointed by Catherine Ashton Special Envoy for Libya. The Spanish diplomat has served since 2011 as Special Representative for the Southern Mediterranean region, and previously as Secretary-General at the Spanish Prime Minister's Office as well as Sherpa for the G20.
Joaquin Gonzales-Ducay e Hidajet Biscevic will be respectively Head of the EU Delegation in Senegal and Tajikistan. Mr. Gonzales-Ducay is currently Head of mission in Guinea-Bissau and has a distinguished career in the European institutions; Mr. Biscevic, former Croatian Ambassador to Turkey, he was State Secretary at the Croatian Foreign Ministry from 2003-2007 and, from 2007-2012, Secretary-General of the Regional Co-operation Council, which was created by the South-East European Co-operation Process.
NATO AND JAPAN ENHANCE THE PARTNERSHIP
The Individual Partnership and Cooperation Program signed by the NATO Secretary General and the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, during his visit to NATO Headquarters, is aimed at reinforcing political dialogue and cooperation between NATO and Japan. “The security and stability in the Euro-Atlantic and Asia-Pacific regions were interlinked”, affirmed the NATO Secretary General and pointing to the crisis in Ukraine he highlighted that in this time of crisis the dialogue with like-minded partners as Japan is key to address global security challenges.
EDA LAUNCHES THE FIRST EUROPEAN MANUAL NEUTRALIZATION TRAINING COURSE OF IED
The course which is taking place from 5 May to 6 June involves different experts from each of the participating countries, Austria, Germany, Ireland, Italy and Sweden. Manual Neutralization of IED is used in situations when due to the nature of the mechanical device it is not possible to use remote techniques to neutralise an Improvised Explosive Device (IED). The aim of the training course is to develop and enhance skills needed to neutralise complex devices under dangerous situations and will make use of kits developed by EDA to defuse improvised explosive devices. Although they have been most associated with the campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq they actually represent a threat in a variety locations. This is the first of four courses that will take place over the next four years.
NATO: EXERCISE “STEADFAST JAVELIN 1” IN ESTONIA
Around 6,000 troops from Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, France, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the United Kingdom and the United States have taking part to the NATO’s “Steadfast Javelin 1”, the large-scale exercise underway in Estonia until 23 May. The scope is to test Allied forces on their ability to work together as well as maintaining NATO’s readiness and combat effectiveness. “This exercise reflects NATO’s strong commitment to collective defence in the Baltic region”, said Commander Allied Joint Force Command Brunssum, General Hans-Lothar Domröse, who assumed command of the forces participating in “Steadfast Javelin 1”.
MAY 16 -20
FLOODS IN BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA AND SERBIA: NATO AND THE EUROPEAN UNION OFFER THEIR ASSISTANCE
Upon the request of the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the Euro-Atlantic Disaster Response Coordination Centre, over 20 NATO and partner countries have offered assistance for ongoing flood relief efforts. Following heavy rainfalls that started on 13 May, on 15 May Bosnia and Herzegovina requested disaster assistance to tackle severe floods and landslides in the North Eastern and Central parts of the country. Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina requested the intervention of the European Civil Protection Mechanism too. In addition, some Member States will offer their support through the Emergency Response Coordination Centre.
MAY 19 – 29
“UNIFIED VISION 2014” TO TEST NATO’S ASSETS INTEROPERABILITY
The largest ever test of NATO’s Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities began at Oerland Air Station in Norway. The ten-day trial, called Unified Vision 2014 (UV14), involves more than 2,000 participants from 18 NATO Member states and 3 NATO partners. UV14 will help the Alliance to prepare the introduction of its future Alliance Ground Surveillance capability and to enhance data sharing with other ISR systems provided by nations. ISR is a key factor to guarantee Alliance’s strategic readiness and effectiveness in conducting operations and missions.
NEW EU ELECTION OBSERVATION MISSION TO KOSOVO
Upon invitation made by the President of Kosovo, the European Union has launched a new Election Observation Mission to monitor legislative election which will be held on June 8. The mission represents another signal of EU’s commitment and follows the Election Observer Mission that was carried out from October 2013 to February 2014 , for the supervision of local elections.
EU ECONOMIC SANCTIONS AGAINST SYRIA EXTENDED
The Council of the European Union has decided to renew the restrictive measures against the Syrian regime, on the basis of a review of the original decision taken on 31 May 2013. The decision will apply until 1 June 2015 and include a number of measures as export and import bans, an oil embargo, as well as restrictions on investments, financial activity and the transport sector.