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Observatory on European defence, November 2007


6 November 2007
EU - Contrast to International Terrorism

On 6 November, the European Commissioner for Justice, Freedom and Security Frattini, proposed some measures to fight international terrorism. Among them were penal sanctions for those who use the internet illegally in order to recruit and train future terrorists, the introduction of a Passenger Name Record (PNR) for passengers of aircraft entering and leaving European soil, and an action plan to control explosives.

14 November 2007 
NATO - President of the Military Committee

The Italian Admiral Giampaolo Di Paola, Chief of Staff, was appointed President of NATO's Military Committee. He will be in charge for three years, starting from June 2008.

19-20 November 2007
EU General Affairs and External Relations Council - Security and Development, ESDP Missions: Chad, Bosnia

The Council met in different formats, with the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Ministers of Defence, as well as Ministers of Development and Cooperation.
The Ministers talked about the nexus between security and development and how this nexus can be used in the EU's external action (strategic planning, reform of the security sector, partnership with regional organizations, humanitarian aid).
The Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Defence examined the ESDP developments in the last six months and the future missions in Chad and Kosovo, but they also talked about ways to contribute to security sector reform in Guinea-Bissau, civil and military support for the UN and the African Union in Darfur, the missions in Congo, Bosnia, Gaza and the Palestinian territories, Iraq and Afghanistan.
In particular, in relation to the state of preparation of the EUFOR-Tchad/RCA military operation, which is to support the UN mission in East Chad and in the northeast of the Central African Republic, Ministers analysed the problems of the mission, such as the vast territory and the absence of infrastructure which will call for an important additional effort in terms of tactical transport, especially helicopters. By the end of 2007, deployment will reach initial operation capacity. By February 2008, full operation will be achieved, with 3,500 men, 4,300 including strategic reserves. The mission will be led by Irish General Patrick Nash, while headquarters is situated in Mont Valerien, France. The Force Commander will be the French General Jean-Philippe Ganascia; France will send 1,500 men, more than any other country.
A part of the mission in Bosnia will be reconfigured, as discussed by the Ministers. The European Union Police Mission (EUPM) will be extended until December 31st 2009, while the number of troops participating in the EUFOR-Althea mission will be more than halved, even if a military force ready to intervene in case of necessity will remain (approx 2,500 soldiers that can be tripled in 24 hours).

19-20 November 2007
EU Defence Ministers - Military and civil Capabilities, Training

The EU Ministers of Defence participated in the General Affairs and External Relations Council, and examined the semester report on ESDP development. In relation to the development of military capabilities, the ministers approved the qualitative progress made towards the "2010 Headline Goal" programme and approved the "Progress Catalogue Report 2007", which evaluates the needs, in particular, relating to force protection, deployment and information superiority. The Council underlined the importance of EU-NATO cooperation. The Ministers took note of the results of the Battlegroups coordination Conference (11 October) which made the rotation calendar until the first semester of 2010 possible. With regard to civil capabilities, the "Civilian Capabilities Improvement Conference", held alongside the Council, acknowledged achievement of the objectives described in the "Civilian Headline Goal 2008". Looking at these results and at the growing experience in civilian crisis management operations, a new program was adopted: "Civilian Headline Goal 2010". Finally, ministers received the report by CFSP High Representative Solana, on the strengthening of the EU Chief of Staff's planning capabilities. The measures contained in the report will be discussed and implemented by the Council in 2008.

19-20 November 2007
EU Defence Ministers - European Defence Agency

EU Ministers of Defence approved the report on the activities and results in 2007 of the European Defence Agency (EDA), as well as EDA's work plan and budget for 2008. Compared to 2007, EDA's allocations will increase from €17 to 20 million, the operational budget will increase from €5 to 6 million. The €6 million for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) that will be transferred to EDA after the decision of the Agency's Central Committee will increase the overall budget by one third over last year.
The introduction of a multi-year budget (3 years) was not possible because of the opposition of Great Britain, Sweden and the Netherlands.
In relation to the system of assessing investments for 2008, and to the objectives established by EDA for a more coherent defence spending (the objectives show percentages to be reached, for example, in cooperation programs and in R&D spending), member states will adhere voluntarily to reach a positive collective result, rather than on a national basis.
Specifically for R&T, Ministers approved a "Framework for Joint European Strategy in Defence R&T", meant to improve collective investments in military and industrial technologies. The strategy is aimed at governments and industries, but also research centres and stakeholders in the sector, and will provide the framework for the EDA's future initiatives.

30 November 2007
EU Transportation Council - Galileo

EU Transportation Ministers approved the new plan for the realization of the European Satellite Navigation System, Galileo, which came to a standstill in the past because of the failure of the public/private partnership that was supposed to finance the programme. The new plan will be publicly financed with €3.4 billion and should be functioning by 2013 - a delay of three years with respect to the original timetable. The costs after 2013 will be submitted for further deliberation.