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EU moves to strengthen NATO and defence partnership

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EU moves to strengthen NATO and defence partnership

Federica Mogherini - Photo EU Council.

(BRUSSELS) - EU foreign affairs ministers ended a two-day meeting on Tuesday with moves to strengthen Europe's security and defence and its partnership with NATO.

The Council meeting focused on three different elements of a European Defence and Security package which reflects a new level of ambition and actions which look to EU security and defence needs.

The plan defines as its priorities responding to external conflicts and crises; building capacities of partners; and protecting the EU and its citizens.

"The implementation plan on security and defence and the conclusions adopted by the Council are the best guarantee to deliver to our citizens and our partners on security and defence", said the EU's foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini. "It is Europe at its best: when we do things together, we do them better," she added.

On NATO, ministers agreed an EU-NATO joint declaration giving fresh impetus and new substance to the NATO-EU strategic partnership. They underlined the need for comprehensive EU-NATO coordination and complementarity and the commitment of the EU to a strong transatlantic relationship.

The declaration reflects EU needs to boost its ability to counter hybrid threats; to broaden its operational cooperation including at sea; to expand Europe's coordination on cyber security and defence; and to develop "coherent, complementary and interoperable defence capabilities".

At the meeting, defence ministers took stock of 40 concrete proposals being developed in the seven areas identified in the joint declaration for deepening cooperation. The proposals are expected to be presented and adopted at the respective Councils of the two organisations in early December.

Outcome of the Council meeting

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