The Internal - External Security Nexus

Summary: The paper seeks to contribute to the operationalisation of cooperation between the realms of civilian CSDP and JHA, by shining light on the different understandings of the term, both conceptually and operationally, and on the risks of and obstacles for operationalisation. The paper also provides a number of policy recommendations.

The paper’s findings are based on sixteen expert interviews, two written contributions by EU Member States, and a review of primary and secondary literature. Sections II-IV discuss the results of the research, that is: the consensus between the interviewees on the broad definition of the security nexus and the need to move from the conceptual to the operational level; the variety of cooperative formats that can fall under CSDP-JHA cooperation; the consideration that internal security is a legitimate goal of CSDP missions and its risks; and the obstacles to such operationalisation.

The paper concludes by providing four policy recommendations: first, to improve the institutionalisation of CSDP-JHA cooperation on the national, Brussels, and mission level; second, to foster cooperation between the two domains in the spirit of the EU’s Integrated Approach, while respecting the distinct mandates and goals of CSDP and JHA; third, to utilise strategic communication to foster understanding of the internal-external security nexus at all levels; fourth, to strengthen the role of missions in contributing to the improvement of CSDP-JHA cooperation, and thus of civilian CSDP.

Reference: Mavrakou, S. (2021). The Internal - External Security Nexus: A contribution to a better understanding and operationalisation of cooperation between civilian CSDP and JHA, European Centre of Excellence for Civilian Crisis Management (CoE). 

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