Nearly 10 years after regime change, seven years since the first democratic elections and despite several billion dollars worth of targeted aid, the rule of law in Iraq ranges from fragile to non-existent. In one of the first tests of Europe’s Common Security and Defence Policy, a small and little-known mission, EUJUST LEX-Iraq, is braving the precarious security situation to try to strengthen Iraqi institutions, such as the judiciary, police and prison services.
EMPA’s 2012 Best Article and Best Photo Award winners were announced during Association’s General Meeting that took place in Prague, Czech Republic on 18 October 2012. EMPA’s President Mrs. Līga Lakuča in her address reminded participating members and guests that this year for the first time in Association’s history, EMPA’s annual best article and best picture awards’ winners were selected by members’ internet voting. This year there were 4 nominations from 3 countries for EMPA’s 2012 Best Article Award and 37 nominations from 6 countries for EMPA’s 2012 Best Picture Award.
Mrs. Līga Lakuča’s Interview with the Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe (DSACEUR)
General Sir Richard Shirreff
Since the NATO summit in 2006, the Rīga Conference (www.rigaconference.lv) has developed into a leading foreign and security policy forum in Northern Europe for world renowned political, intellectual and business leaders to gather and debate the challenges of current international agenda.
After receiving a call about dangerous materials in Barnim, soldiers of the 2nd battalion of sappers (2 BSAP) from the 12th MB while checking the area found human remains.After receiving a call about dangerous materials in Barnim, soldiers of the 2nd battalion of sappers (2 BSAP) from the 12th MB while checking the area found human remains.
NATO’s air policing mission in the Baltics was launched in 2004 after Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia joined NATO. Since then air force fighters from 14 countries have performed air policing. There are countries that have fulfilled this mission only once but others, like Germany, have fulfilled the mission already five times. Poland has participated in this mission four times, the United States, France and Denmark three times, Belgium, Norway and the Czech Republic twice. Air policing mission has experienced a number of extensions, the latest being at NATO Chicago Summit this summer where it was extended for indefinite period of time which surely should be regarded as an excellent result of the three Baltic States’ diplomatic performance and cooperation.
At a ceremony at Camp Jullien in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Friday, 31 August 2012, the Commander of the 19th HRVCON Colonel Tomislav Galić handed out medals to members of the 4th NATO military police training advisory team (MP TAT) at the ANA School of Military Police.
The Most Reverend Archbishop Zbigņevs Stankevičs of the Roman Catholic Metropolitan Archdiocese of Riga visited the Latvian National Armed Forces (LNAF) Ādaži base and Chapel; he met with Latvian Chief of Defence (CHOD) Major General Raimonds Graube, LNAF Chief of Chaplains Elmārs Pļaviņš, base units’ commanders and chaplains. During our interview we discussed the life and values, and the chaplains’ role in our armed forces.
The Swedish Air Force hosts a combined live exercise dubbed Nordic Air Meet 2012 in the airspace of Northern Sweden on 27 August to 7 September. The Finnish Air Force’s contribution to the event will be eight Hornet multi-role fighters. Tanker aircraft of the United States Air Force will also be involved, operating out of the Rovaniemi airfield.
The Navy will participate in the largest ever oil pollution response exercise to be conducted in the Baltic Sea. The Balex Delta exercise, coordinated by the Finnish Environment Institute will be held at sea off the coast of Helsinki from 28-29 August 2012.
Some 500 persons will attend the exercise along with over twenty pollution response vessels from nine different countries.
The Chief of Staff of the Irish Defence Forces, Lieutenant General Seán McCann and his spouse will arrive in Finland today for an official from 27 to 29 August 2012. The Commander of the Finnish Defence Forces, General Ari Puheloinen will host the visit together with his spouse.
Military vessels from Albania, Montenegro, Croatia, Greece and Italy participated in international naval military exercise ADRION LIVEX 2012 in Slovenia which was conducted in June 2012 in the port of Koper in Slovenia, in the Slovenian territorial sea and in international waters. The exercise organised by Slovenia's military forces command is to strengthen regional cooperation of naval forces.
Information Command Systems, 3D Map and biometric equipment are modern tools of the soldier on a mission.
12th Mechanised Brigade (from Szczecin) prepares intensively for the 12 rotation of the Polish Military Contingent in Afghanistan that will occur in the autumn of this year. Currently, soldiers ended one of the intensive trainings in information equipment operation of command systems called Command Post of the Future (CPOF), which took place in Szczecin.
In current times of economic austerity European cooperation is becoming more and more important to maintain or improve our defence capabilities, can be read in many articles of NATO, EU, EDA, national governments and think tanks. This statement is very true: sharing costs is most often less expensive than paying the bill all by yourself!
On Friday, 29 June, the President of the Republic of Finland appointed Carl Christoffer Haglund, Master of Science (Economics and Business Administration), a Member of the Government and Minister of Defence as of 5 July. Haglund is Party Leader and a Member of the European Parliament.
On Thursday, 28 June General Knud Bartels, Chairman of NATO’s Military Committee, starts his two-day working visit to Latvia. General Bartels will visit the Latvian National Armed Forces (LNAF) Ādaži Military Base where he will participate in an award ceremony recognising several Latvian and Norwegian soldiers that have participated in a peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan; later he will visit the School of Explosive Ordnance Disposal.
The OSCE Annual Security Review Conference is held from 26 June to 28 June in Vienna, Austria. The conference session on conventional arms control and confidence- and security-building measures will be moderated by the Republic of Latvia Ministry of Defence State Secretary Jānis Sārts.
Group of students of General Staff School and the Command and Staff School were a four-day trip to Sicily, with the aim to study the allied joint operation "Husky" which started landing forces in Sicily on 9 July 1943.
The students of the Royal College of Defence Studies (RCDS) from London, UK visited Serbia on their study tour of the region from 17 to 23 May. RCDS group of students is led by Major General Sebastian Roberts.
The first one of the three mine countermeasure vessels ordered by the Finnish Navy, MHC (Mine Hunter Coastal) Katanpää was handed over to the Finnish Navy.
The vessel was accepted by the Commander of the Finnish Navy, Rear Admiral Veli-Jukka Pennala at the Intermarine shipyard in La Spezia, Italy. All the three MHC vessels built in Sarzana, Italy will arrive to their Finnish home base in the Archipelago Sea Naval Command during the year 2012.
On 10 June 2012, a group from EUJUST LEX-Iraq met with the Chief Justice of Iraq, Medhat al-Mahmoud. The group, led by Jacques Burger, Head of Operations, and Anton Girginov, Judiciary Team Leader, informed the Chief Justice about EUJUST LEX-Iraq and its mandate; and sought his opinion on practical training topics which EUJUST LEX might be able to provide. Before the meeting, one of our longest-serving interpreters, Ali Al- Rubaie’e, received an appreciation letter from the Chief Justice in recognition of his work.