Military - note:
In November 2004, the EU heads of government signed a "Treaty Establishing a Constitution for Europe" that offers possibilities for increased defense and security cooperation. If ratified, this treaty will give operational effect to the European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP), approved in the 2000 Nice Treaty. Despite limits of cooperation for some EU members, development of a EU military planning unit is likely to continue. The planning unit will support the EU Rapid Reaction Force, which EU ministers have said will deploy 2 "battle groups" in January 2007. France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, and Italy continue to press for wider coordination. The 5-nation Eurocorps - created in 1992 by France, Germany, Belgium, Spain, and Luxembourg - has already deployed troops and police on peacekeeping missions to Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo and assumed command of the ISAF in Afghanistan in August 2004. Eurocorps directly commands the 5,000-man Franco-German Brigade, the Multinational Command Support Brigade, and EUFOR, which took over from SFOR in Bosnia in December 2004. Individual EU nations made commitments to provide 67,100 troops following the December 1999 EU summit in Helsinki. Some 56,000 troops from EU member states were actually deployed on various international operations in 2003. In August 2004, the new European Defense Agency, tasked with promoting cooperative European defense capabilities, began operations. In November 2004, the EU Council of Ministers formally committed to creating 13 1,500-man battle groups by the end of 2007, to respond to international crises on a rotating basis. Twenty-two of the EU's 25 nations have agreed to supply troops. France, Italy, and the UK formed the first of 3 battle groups in 2005. In May 2005, Norway, Sweden and Finland agreed to establish one of the battle groups, possibly to include Estonia forces. The remaining 9 groups are to be formed in 2007. A rapid-reaction naval EU Maritime Task Group was stood up in March 2007. (2005)
NOTE: The information regarding European Union on this page is re-published from the 2008 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of European Union Military 2008 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about European Union Military 2008 should be addressed to the CIA.
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