The Informal Meeting of the EU Defence Ministers to Take Place in Riga
On February 18-19 at the National Library of Latvia, the informal meeting of the EU Ministers of Defence is scheduled to take place to discuss current issues and prepare for the European Council discussion on defence in June 2015 - the most important event in the defence policy area during the Latvian Presidency.
The EU Defence Ministers will discuss the progress on the implementation of the previous European Council conclusions, the hybrid warfare and the strategic communication, as well as the ongoing EU military missions and operations and the usability of the EU Battle Groups, and the recent changes in the global security environment.
The participants of the informal meeting include Ministers of Defence of the 28 Member States, Federica Mogherini, the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission, Commanders of the EU missions and operations, including, General Sir Adrian John Bradshaw, the Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe who is also the Commander of the European Force Althea, and Jens Stoltenberg, the NATO Secretary General.
Informal meetings of the EU Ministers of Defence take place every six months in each rotating Presidency of the EU Council. Informal meetings are intended to informally discuss some key issues included in the EU Common Security and Defence Policy agenda.
On December 19-20, 2013 for the first time since the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, the European Council held a thematic debate on defence. It identified three priority actions for stronger cooperation – increase the effectiveness, visibility and impact of the CSDP, enhance the development of capabilities and strengthen Europe`s defence industry. Since then the relevant EU institutions and member states have worked on fulfilling tasks given by the European Council.