The Slovenia Times

Slovenia supports EU army idea, but...


Attending an EU defence ministerial in Brussels, Erjavec said on Tuesday that some activities were more suitable for the EU, while others were better carried out through NATO.

"Europe needs capabilities that will allow it to respond to security challenges on its own," said Erjavec, who believes that the international security situation indicates the need for a stronger EU defence system.

However, not all member states are on board with the idea. Erjavec mentioned Sweden and Denmark and reservations about doubling of defence capabilities.

The idea, advocated recently by French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been criticised by US President Donald Trump.

Moreover, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said that Macron and Merkel were being too hasty and that security in Europe can only be guaranteed by NATO.

The European Commission has meanwhile said that Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker broached the topic already four years ago.

The defence ministerial meanwhile approved 17 new defence projects, which expands the EU's Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) to a total of 34 projects.

Slovenia will be taking part in three new PESCO projects. Erjavec said that five Slovenian companies will take part in one of the projects focusing on platforms for unmanned aircraft.

The EU's defence ministers also discussed cooperation with NATO as regards cybersecurity. Erjavec underlined the need to strengthen cooperation with the countries of the Western Balkans.

While in Brussels, he also met his Italian counterpart, Elisabetta Trento. They agreed to intensify cooperation between the countries.


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