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EU Presidency: Responsibility and Unique Opportunity at Once for the Hungarian Defence Forces from the Strategic Level to the Tactical One

Text: Ministry of Defence | Photo: Gábor Kormány |  13:07 July 5, 2024

Hungary is taking over the presidency of the Council of the European Union in a critical period when we have to navigate in a complex security environment and when defence is occupying a distinguished place in the EU’s agenda, said General Dr. Gábor Böröndi, Chief of HDF General Staff, at the Embassy of Hungary in Brussels on Wednesday, 3 July. Upon the proposal of the Hungarian presidency, the representatives of the EU Military Committee will not negotiate in Brussels but in a member state for the first time in the EU’s history; thus, Hungary will host this high-ranking event in October.


General Dr. Gábor Böröndi said at the military diplomacy event organised for the representatives of the European Union Military Committee (EUMC) that this year is of distinguished importance for Hungary also because with the second presidency started on 1 July, we celebrate the 20th anniversary of our EU membership. He underlined that “the Hungarian EU presidency is in a period when the European strategic environment requires a stronger and more proactive European Union in the fields of security and defence”. He added that strengthening the European defence policy is among the focal areas of the Hungarian presidency, lasting until 31 December.

Hungary has set the goal of promoting the goals defined in the EU’s Strategic Compass action plan and implementing them by the deadline of 2025. “Strengthening the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) is at the centre of our program, which in practice covers strengthening the EU’s crisis management tools, enhancing the efficiency of capability development and creating a competitive and innovative European Defence Technological and Industrial Base”, he said.


The chief of defence underlined, related to the military tasks of the presidency, that Hungary contributes troops to the German and Polish battle groups created under a German and Polish leadership within the framework of the EU’s rapid deployment capability and supports the overall development of the Military Planning and Conduct Capability (MPCC). The general emphasized the 360° approach to security, due to which the Western Balkans continues to be a region with distinguished priority for Europe and Hungary. The proof of the Hungarian commitment is that from the beginning of this year, EUFOR Operation Althea has a Hungarian commander, Major General Dr. László Sticz.

Besides Hungary being committed to constantly supporting the CSDP missions and operations, the Autumn Exercise Brave Warrior of the HDF will be connected to this year’s EU Exercise Integrated Resolve in the interest of generating new capabilities. Further priorities of the Hungarian EU presidency are the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) and the European Defence Agency (EDA), as the central elements of the joint efforts for capability development based on cooperation.

The Hungarian presidency will promote the efforts aimed at strengthening the European Defence Technological and Industrial Base (EDTIB) and support the work related to the European defence industrial strategy and the proposed European defence industrial program.


Chairman of the EUMC General Robert Brieger emphasized in his speech that Hungary took over the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU following an intensive and detailed preparation. He said that Hungary’s commitments and priorities fit perfectly into the EUMC’s agenda. The CEUMC said that the EU’s rapid deployment capability is the future military tool for economic and political union, and this tool might be successful in every scenario and dimension as it may reach its full capacity by the end of 2025.

Major General Tamás Sándor, Hungary’s military representative to NATO and the EU said that the EU presidency is creating a great opportunity for the Hungarian Defence Forces. He stated that “cooperation with nations has a very broad spectrum from the strategic level to that of military organizations”.