EU army ‘could play into Russia’s hands’

DELFI / Mindaugas Ažušilis

“The United States and Canada do not belong to the European Union, and so they would not be a part of the EU armed forces, and that would be very convenient for Russia. The Kremlin could say: why there are forces deployed in Europe from other NATO countries when there is an EU army,” military expert Dr. Deividas Šlekys, a scientist in Vilnius University’s Institute of International Relations and Political Science, said.

The academic noted that such a move could also be detrimental to the development of the Lithuanian armed forces as the Lithuanian army does not currently have enough capacity to take part in NATO activities not to mind in an EU army that would be another international commitment on top of that.

“The fact that for half of year our soldiers will be wearing NATO helmets and the EU helmets on the other half, will not develop our military forces,” Šlekys said.

He said that a common EU army could reinforce the impression of unity in the union, but would actually not contribute to the strengthening of the bloc’s defensive capabilities.

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