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Economic difficulties and the risk of an attack by Russia push the countries of Europe to a "military Schengen"

One thing is the visible danger that an aggressive Russia represents for European countries, one thing is the need for economies of scale, and the governments of the countries have begun to work more and more intensively in the direction of a "military Schengen".

The head of NATO's Joint Logistics and Support Command (JSEC), General Alexander Solfrank, confirmed in an interview with the publication that the bloc is interested in reducing the number of bureaucratic regulations to increase its mobility.

In addition, the military leader advocated strengthening cooperation between alliance members on the issue of equipment interchangeability. In particular, he considered it wrong to ban the use of parachutes from other countries by paratroopers of one country.

As TASS notes, the European Union and NATO began to create a "military Schengen system" in the fall of 2017. The initiative, initially expressed by several Baltic politicians, was actively supported by Federica Mogherini, who headed the diplomatic EU service during that period.


The formation of this system became the main task of the EU's Permanent Structured Defense Cooperation (PESCO) program created in the same year, one of the key elements of which were projects to expand and strengthen European transport infrastructure, including roads, railways, bridges, tunnels, ports and airports so that as many highways as possible can be used to deliver heavy and large equipment.

At the same time, European countries have begun to discuss harmonizing their very different regulations on the transport of military and other dangerous goods, especially explosives.

All this was supposed to lead to the creation of a "military Schengen" - a system that would ideally allow convoys to cross the whole of Europe under a single permit, stopping only for refueling and rest. The initiative was actively supported by NATO. With the launch of the PESCO programme, the interaction between the alliance and the EU has intensified significantly.

Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) is a framework and process for strengthening defense cooperation between EU member states that are able and willing to participate in it. 25 member states joined PESCO and agreed to invest, design, develop and make more use of defense capabilities within this framework. Currently, Denmark and Malta do not participate in PESCO.


The objective of PESCO, established by Article 42(6) and Article 46 of the Treaty on European Union and Protocol No. 10, is for the Member States concerned to jointly achieve a coherent full range of defense capabilities available to them for national and multinational (EU, NATO, UN, etc.) missions and operations. PESCO was officially established in 2017 by Council Decision (CFSP) 2017/2315.

PESCO is designed to:

strengthen the EU's capabilities in international security;
to help protect EU citizens;
to maximize the effectiveness of defense spending.
While participation is voluntary, decision-making still rests with individual Member States and takes into account the particular nature of their security and defense policies.

Participating Member States develop projects jointly, with the aim of:

the improvement of military training and military exercises;
jointly enhancing their capabilities, including in cyberspace.

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