France, Germany, and Poland Call for a European Security Council

Foreign Ministers Jean‑Marc Ayrault, Frank‑Walter Steinmeier, & Witold Waszczykowski, August 28, 2016We want to strengthen the European Union and the foundations of European integration by proving its ability to act….

We want a stronger, more secure Europe with an intensified and more effective Common Security and Defence Policy. We welcome the Global Strategy presented by the High Representative, which aptly describes the strategic context and the dangers confronting the European Union. It identifies the priorities, the objectives and the ways in which we can deliver true strategic independence and a stronger European foreign and security policy which will make the European Union a genuine global player. We must now take the necessary steps to rapidly implement this strategy. We support a substantive follow‑up strategy in the field of security and defence. We advocate an annual meeting of the European Council in the format of a “European Security Council” looking at strategic issues in internal and external security, which are indivisibly linked.

Europe needs to restore confidence on the basis of the OSCE principles. We want the European Union to provide sustainable support for endeavours by our eastern, southern and regional partners towards stability, development and crisis-prevention by conducting projects designed to strengthen resilience and the development of institutional capacities. We share the concept of sustainable, comprehensive, ambitious engagement expressed in the strategy to stabilise the EU’s eastern and southern neighbourhoods. Measures to strengthen our neighbours’ resilience and internal stability will impact favourably on our own security. We believe it necessary to use all articles of the Treaty on European Union, including those which have not been used to date and which give us a huge degree of flexibility, in order to consolidate and intensify our cooperation on defence and to enable us to respond to the entire spectrum of crises.

The European Union, which is currently contributing to peace and stability by participating in eleven civilian and six military missions on three continents, needs European civilian and military planning and command capability in crisis situations. We stress the need for the sustainable development of a strong and competitive defence economy in Europe. Strengthening security and defence policy will also help to strengthen European capabilities in NATO and to implement the decisions on defending the territory of the Alliance as well as transatlantic cooperation on international crisis management. Recognising the importance of the development of the strategic partnership between the EU and NATO, we advocate the complete implementation of the Warsaw Declaration adopted by the EU and NATO on 8 July 2016.

Excerpts from joint declaration by the Foreign Ministers of the Weimar Triangle, Frank‑Walter Steinmeier (Germany), Jean‑Marc Ayrault (France) and Witold Waszczykowski (Poland), on the future of Europe.

Image: Foreign Ministers Jean‑Marc Ayrault, Frank‑Walter Steinmeier, & Witold Waszczykowski, August 28, 2016 (photo: Pavel Supernak/Polish Foreign Ministry)