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In the Same Direction – Meeting of EU and NATO Chiefs of Defence

Text: defence.hu | Photo: Gert-Jan D`haene |  16:46 May 23, 2024

Military leaders of the EU and NATO recently met in Brussels. The preparation for Hungary’s EU presidency in the second half of the year was the main focus of the military discussions held with the participation of the chiefs of defence of Belgium, Hungary and Spain. Meanwhile, the chiefs of defence of NATO countries discussed the implementation of the new defence plans of the Alliance and the reshaping of NATO’s warfare.

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General Dr Gábor Böröndi, Chief of HDF General Staff, first represented Hungary in the Belgian capital at the meeting of chiefs of defence of the Council of the European Union’s presidency trio. The meeting of the Spanish, Belgian and Hungarian chiefs of defence provided an opportunity to coordinate the military and current presidency priorities of this economic and political organization – said General Robert Brieger, Chairman of the EU Military Committee (EUMC) at the presidency trio meeting of the previous, current and following states holding the presidency. The Austrian general stated that the relevancy of the EUMC should be enhanced due to the increasing security challenges; military and defence policy goals should be made known to a wider audience. The discussion about the results of the Belgian EU presidency advanced the open dialogue about issues of key importance, which enhanced the effective cooperation among the members of the presidency trio.

General Dr Gábor Böröndi recalled that Hungary will take over in July the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU for half a year. In his speech, he introduced the defence policy priorities of the Hungarian presidency and the distinguished contributions related to it. “Hungary is committed to maintaining its engagement in EU and NATO missions and operations, especially in the Western Balkans region. Our country will continue to provide international exercises in its territory for its military partners in the future, thus prioritising the EU’s effective defence capability development. Hungary will also support this issue via organizing high-level professional events, including defence and innovation conferences, strengthening its defence industrial base and defence innovation, and constantly developing its armed forces” – he emphasized.


General Böröndi explained that the stability of the Sahel is essential to Hungary, from the aspects of security and migration. The Hungarian government ratified the complex support package last year, as a part of which Hungarian troops can also serve in the Republic of Chad, which is marked as the stable bastion of the region. With the operation, Hungary strives to create a multi-component diplomatic, economic, developmental-humanitarian and military cooperation – he said in Brussels.

At the meeting of the chiefs of defence of the NATO Military Committee, the feasibility of the Alliance’s new defence plans, the reshaping of NATO’s warfare and the methods and amount of support to Ukraine were discussed at the committee’s headquarters in Brussels. The military leaders were informed about the NATO Warfighting Capstone Concept (NWCC), then they participated in a session dealing with the Russo-Ukrainian War, where Ukrainian Major General Anatoliy Barhylevych – who has been the chief of defence of the Armed Forces of Ukraine for three months now – updated them on the current situation of the Russo-Ukrainian conflict. The discussions were closed with a session about the processes connected to the family of plans for the deterrence and defence posture in the Euro-Atlantic region. “NATO is stronger and readier than it has ever been, and it is growing stronger by the day” – this was how Dutch Admiral Rob Bauer, Chair of the NATO Military Committee summarized the results of the session. He also added that the members of the Alliance are actively helping each other and working in a coordinated way so that the new defence plans can be fully carried out.