Belgian Prime Minister shares Macron’s vision to strengthen Europe’s defence autonomy
Share article:
Share article:

Belgian Prime Minister shares Macron’s vision to strengthen Europe’s defence autonomy

Credit: Belga

Prime Minister Charles Michel said he shared French President Emmanuel Macron’s desire to increase Europe’s strategic defence autonomy on Sunday. 

“One needs the correct operational capacity to guarantee peace, security, stability and democracy. Therefore, we need the means to achieve our goals. The European angle is important because of the increasing number of security threats,” he said during a Bastille Day march in Paris on the 14th of July.

This year’s theme was European military cooperation. 

Macron has made European defence one of his top priorities. He thinks it is important for Europe to have more strategic autonomy, while still being backed by NATO. The Prime Minister seems to share this vision. 

“We have made a lot of progress on this. There has been a lot of political momentum, a lot of countries have got involved. We will have to find a way we can still work with NATO, while at the same time develop a strategy that includes a communal political and diplomatic plan,” Michel said. 

The nine other countries which have joined France’s European Intervention Initiative (E2I) – Belgium, the UK, Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Estonia, Spain, Portugal and Finland – all took part in the march. President Macron created the initiative a year ago. Its aim is to develop a “shared strategic culture.” 

Michel said the Bastille Day march was “full of emotion.” He was accompanied by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker. 

France invited around a dozen of its European military partners to take part in this year’s march. 

Around 4,300 soldiers, 196 vehicles, 237 horses, 69 airplanes and 39 helicopters joined the march down the famous avenue des Champs Elysées.


The Brussels Times 

Latest news

Cycling traffic officially added to VRT’s traffic bulletin
Usually a list of updates for drivers on busy roads, traffic bulletins will now include the latest travel news for cyclists in Belgium, VRT announced ...
MEPs call for European strategy to protect workers from asbestos
Members of the European Parliament are calling on the Commission to create a strategy for removing all abestos from buildings in order to reduce the ...
Mandatory vaccine for carers: employers call for sanctions
In a notice submitted by the National Council for Work (CNT), employers have called for heavy penalties for healthcare workers who refuse to receive ...
Police pension protest blocks several Brussels crossroads
On Wednesday, around 350 police officers expressed their dissatisfaction about the unclear pension scheme, low salaries and politicised police unions ...
Belgium in Brief: A Consultative Committee Sequel
Sequels often have a lot to live up to and when it comes to movie franchises, it gets difficult to keep up the hype once you get towards the final ...
25 years ago today: 300,000 people marched in white against child abuse
On this day 25 years ago, over 300,000 people marched in Brussels to demand a more effective justice system and to support the families of Julie, ...
Windy weather forecast should lower gas prices
After weeks of relatively calm conditions, a return to windy weather should lower Europe's soaring energy prices. Wind turbines in the UK and Germany ...
EC calls on candidate countries to focus on fundamental reforms before they can join the EU
The Commission adopted yesterday its 2021 Enlargement Package, providing a detailed assessment of the state of play and the progress made by the ...
Cigarette-eating robot patrols Ghent streets to fight littering
A litter fighting (and eating) robot will be patrolling the streets of Ghent in the coming weeks in an effort to raise awareness of the growing ...
Display of child’s room in Brussels raises awareness of foster families
An exhibit that features a fictitious child’s bedroom has been on display since Tuesday at the Place d'Armes in Namur, with the support of the ...
Brussels Airport becomes shareholder in SkeyDrone
The Brussels Airport company has signed an agreement to become a 50 percent shareholder in SkeyDrone, a subsidiary of skeyes, the Belgian Air ...
Two former Belgian top executives plead guilty to bid manipulation in the US
Two former Belgian top executives of the security company G4S have pleaded guilty in the US to bid rigging, according to reporting from De Tijd. ...