European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker speaks during the 54th Munich Security Conference (MSC) in Munich, Germany, on Feb. 17, 2018. Juncker here on Saturday urged to simplify processes of decision-making in the European Union (EU) defense and security policy. (Xinhua/Luo Huanhuan)
MUNICH, Germany, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) -- European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker here on Saturday urged to simplify processes of decision-making in the European Union (EU) defense and security policy.
Addressing the Munich Security Conference (MSC), Juncker underlined that EU should simplify and unify its decision-making processes if it pursues capabilities in global political issues, while questioning the necessity of unanimous vote among the EU members on common foreign and security policy.
"It cannot remain that we must always decide unanimously on foreign and defense policy," he said.
For the EU, common defense has been a critical theme of the shift away from dependence on the United States, with the November 2017 signing and December 2017 launch of the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) agreement, allowing 25 participating EU member states to pursue greater cooperation on matters of defense and security.
Juncker spoke highly of the progress made last year in this regard.
"We want to emancipate ourselves in defense and security policy issues," he said, adding that it didn't mean against NATO or United States.
Over 500 participants from around the world attended the three-day annual gathering, which kicked off Friday in southern German city of Munich.