Robles takes part in the meeting of European Union defence ministers in Brussels

News - 17.5.2022

The focus of the meeting was to analyse the impact that the recently approved Strategic Compass will have on the European Union's capabilities and operations. Robles stressed that one of Spain's priorities during its presidency of the Council of the Union - in the second half of next year - will be to move forwards in achieving the aims of the Compass. In particular, the Rapid Deployment Capability, which will provide Europe with a military crisis response force of some 5,000 troops.

Developments in Ukraine nearly three months after the invasion were also discussed in a session attended by NATO Deputy Secretary General Mircea Geoana and Ukrainian Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov, who joined by video conference.

The ministers also reviewed the assistance measures implemented by the European Union to support the Ukrainian Armed Forces, to which Spain is a contributor. Robles indicated that in these decisive moments, it is "essential to continue to support Ukraine politically, humanitarianly and militarily".

Finally, the minister welcomed the Finnish and Swedish initiative to join NATO.

On the fringes of the meeting, the Minister for Defence met with her Estonian counterpart, Kalle Laanet, with whom she exchanged views on the reinforcement of the Atlantic Alliance's Eastern Flank. Since the start of the crisis in Ukraine, and together with the other allies, Spain has been contributing to the increased military presence in the region on land, sea and sky.

Non official translation