Online Event ‘Perspectives on the EU’s Defence Clause: How Should it be Developed?’

Since 2009, the EU has had a mutual aid and assistance clause in its founding treaty. This Article 42(7) provides that if an EU country is the victim of armed aggression on its territory, its partners have an obligation to aid and assist it by all the means in their power—an obligation that is binding on all EU countries. So far, Article 42(7) has been invoked only once by France following the 2015 Paris terror attacks.

However, multiple EU countries still have questions regarding the article’s scope, the type of assistance that could be provided or received under it, and its relationship to NATO’s Article 5. As Article 42(7) will also be discussed during the development of the EU’s forthcoming Strategic Compass, this event will explore questions such as: (1) What do different EU countries think of Article 42(7)? (2) What counts as ‘armed aggression’ under the article? (3) What does Article 42(7)’s aid and assistance obligation actually mean?