Italy and Mediterranean security

25 June 2019 - 11:00 - 12:00

In partnership with the Istituto Affari Internationali (IAI), Friends of Europe is launching its study on Italy and the future of European defence and Mediterranean security in Rome. Authored by Paul Taylor, Senior Fellow at Friends of Europe, POLITICO columnist and for many years Reuters EU Affairs editor, it examines Italy’s strategic position in a European and international context, its defence relationships and diplomatic alliances, the role and current state of the armed forces, the place of its defence industries, and the challenges in the Mediterranean region. It will offer recommendations for how to optimise Italy’s defence policy to best assure its own long-term security interests and those of Europe in the Mediterranean.

The study will be released in English and Italian and complements four similar studies on France, Germany, the United Kingdom and Poland’s roles in European security and defence.

IMAGE CREDIT: CC/Flickr - Pennsylvania National Guard

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Friends of Europe’s series of studies on European defence cooperation focus on views from the capitals and bring together influential voices that contribute to the series through interviews.

Press launch: Molto Agitato – Italy and Mediterranean security

Italy is a central player in security in the Mediterranean both because of its geostrategic location and role as a hub for NATO, US forces and the United Nations, and its contributions to military operations, peacekeeping, training and capacity building in the Med, North Africa, the Western Balkans and the Middle East all the way to Afghanistan. To achieve its security objectives, Rome needs the cooperation of the Euro-Atlantic institutions and the UN, yet despite its weight and substantial contributions it has never won a permanent place in the inner circles of any of those organisations, and it has had to agitate for influence. Moreover, the EU also needs a new start to its relations with the countries and people of the Mediterranean region. Both, Italy and the EU, need to look beyond short-term Fortress Europe policies to effectively address the manifold challenges and to support the social development of North Africa and the east Mediterranean countries.

  • How are the challenges from the South and in the Mediterranean area affecting the EU’s security and defence priorities; and are these effective in facing up to the threats and challenges from the perspective of a key EU member state such as Italy?  
  • To what extent does Italy’s approach to migration affect areas like European defence cooperation and integration?
  • How can Italy work better with its other European partners, notably France, to overcome current frictions and forge a more coherent and joined up EU approach to the security challenges from the South?  Is this the time for a new “grand bargain” between Italy and France?

End of press launch

Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI)  



This event is exclusive for Friends of Europe members or by invitation only.

Patrick Vandewalle, Programme Executive
Tel.: +32 893 98 20

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