Minister Coveney to attend meeting of EU Defence Ministers in Brussels
Minister for Defence, Mr. Simon Coveney, T.D. will attend a meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Defence Ministers’ configuration, in Brussels on Thursday, 6 May 2021.
Ministers will receive briefing on a range of topics including the recent visit by the HR/VP Josep Borrell to the Sahel, and updates on the situation in Mozambique and Ukraine. Ministers will also hold discussions on progressing the Strategic Compass which is the latest EU initiative on Security & Defence which aims to define policy orientations and specific goals and objectives in four clusters:
• Crisis Management
• Capability Development
Defence Ministers will be focussing on the Crisis Management aspects at this meeting.
Speaking on EU Missions and Operations in the context of the Strategic Compass, the Minister said:
“Ireland recognises the important role our missions and operations play in delivering a safe and secure environment and in demonstrating the ability of the EU to react positively and swiftly in crisis prevention, protecting innocent civilians, enhancing the rule of law and safeguarding our neighbourhood”.
The Minister also added that “Ireland has a valuable contribution to make to the Crisis Management discussion, having regard to our extensive involvement in overseas peacekeeping missions for several decades”.
Minister Coveney and the other EU Ministers of Defence will attend an informal working lunch with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. At this lunch EU - NATO cooperation will be discussed, with a particular focus on the Central Mediterranean, Western Balkans and the current situation in Afghanistan.
The Minister will also attend meetings of the Steering Boards of the European Defence Agency (EDA) and of the European Union Satellite Centre (SatCen).