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France expresses desire to create European rapid response force

France expresses desire to create European rapid response force Archive photo: French Armed Forces Minister Sebastien Lecornu (Getty Images)

France wants to create rapid response force for the EU to protect the inhabitants of Europe. They will perform tasks where the North Atlantic Alliance is not competent, stated the Minister of the Armed Forces of France, Sébastien Lecornu.

Earlier, French President Emmanuel Macron announced this initiative. He proposed to form EU rapid response force with a total strength of 5,000 personnel starting from next year. It is noted that these rapid reaction forces will be designated for operations such as evacuating European citizens from countries experiencing crises.

Lecornu stated that there are numerous crises where NATO is not competent and where France often conducts operations alone.

"We must be able to quickly create these forces to ensure the security of European citizens in Portugal, Italy, Germany, and France," he said.

He also clarified that there are missions that are militarized but about which NATO should not know for various reasons. The minister cited last year's evacuation of citizens from Sudan as an example and added that France was practically alone in this matter.

What other countries say about this initiative

Earlier, the head of the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Radosław Sikorski, stated that the European Union should take responsibility for strengthening its own defense amidst the United States' focus on confrontation with China.

He added that discussions about an EU army create unnecessary confusion, as they imply the merging of national armies, which, in his opinion, will never happen.

"However, we are in the process of shaping a European military capability known as the Rapid Deployment Capability. I call it the European Legion," said the Polish diplomat.