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The debate of the members of the foreign affairs and national security committees of the national parliaments of the European Union and the members of the European Parliament focused on the objectives of European defence cooperation and size of defence expenses, and also on cyber threats and strategic communication.

Speeches at the Interparliamentary Conference for the Common Foreign and Security Policy and the Common Security and Defence Policy, which was held in Tallinn, dealt with measuring the contribution of defence expenses. The obstacles of and arguments against developing European defence cooperation were also discussed.

Minister of Defence of Estonia Jüri Luik emphasised that it was necessary to remain realists in developing defence cooperation. According to him, the states have different aims in defence cooperation, and our task is to reach an agreement on them.

Co-Chair of the European Council on Foreign Relations Carl Bildt pointed out that both military capabilities and strategic will were necessary for ensuring regional and global security.

NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy Tacan Ildem highlighted the defence policy cooperation of NATO and the European Union. He said that the European Union could not do everything that NATO did by itself, and therefore cooperation was necessary. He added that the countries that did not belong to the European Union also had a role in ensuring the security of the region.

Cyber threats and strategic communication were discussed at the session of the Conference dedicated to practical aspects of the hybrid world. Head of East StratCom Task Force of the European External Action Service Giles Portman spoke of spreading of fake news and false information. “Let’s focus on the content of the message, and not on the messenger,” Portman emphasised.

Director General of the Information System Authority of Estonia Taimar Peterkop underlined that defending of digital society and cyber space was team work. Speaking of influencing of elections, he said that cyber crime was made more dangerous and hard to detect by the fact that it was possible to order it as a service.

Photos of the conference.

Riigikogu Press Service
Epp-Mare Kukemelk
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