On 17th October a ceremony was held to mark the 7th anniversary of the creation of the European Gendarmerie Force (EUROGENDFOR) of which Portugal, represented by National Guard (GNR) is a founder member. 

Vicenza in Italy is the Permanent Headquarters of EUROGENDFOR, where five members of the National Guard carry out their daily work. Together with another 28 representatives from various European Gendarmerie Forces, they celebrated the anniversary by performing a simple military ceremony.

During the ceremony, the current Commander of the Permanent Headquarters EUROGENDFOR, Colonel Esteban Perez Spanish Civil Guard, highlighted both the quality and proficiency of the work done by the staff of the PHQ. This included their planning of the military missions of EGF on the ground, carrying out their tasks in particularly difficult environments, including: “EUFOR RCA”, the European Union military operation in the Central African Republic, launched on 1st April 2014.

During this operation EUROGENDFOR formed a basic component of the mission fulfilling a key role in stabilizing a particularly volatile area of the capital Bangui – by providing an Integrated Police Unit. In another operation  “EUCAP MALI”, the organization provided civil  assistance and training of local police in Mali, as part of the “European Union Civilian CSDP Mission in Mali”.

At the end of the ceremony  a special tribute was given to the deceased EUROGENDFOR military in peacekeeping missions and remembered the motto of EUROGENDFOR “LEX PACIFERAT” – “The Act will bring peace”. This highlights the close link between law enforcement and the development of public order and public safety, this being the cornerstone of action of the European Gendarmerie Force.

Being able to operate under the aegis of the European Union, NATO, the UN or another international ad hoc mandates, EUROGENDFOR is an initiative of five EU countries European (Portugal, Spain, France, Italy and the Netherlands). All the security forces are of a military nature, combining as a single Security Force, with high levels of operational flexibility, able to deploy up to 800 personnel within 30 days.

This provides Europe with a greater ability to conduct crisis management operations. As pointed out by Commander there are currently in an international context, several disturbing situations, where EUROGENDFOR reasserts itself as a tool of high value that can contribute decisively to restore peace and security in conflict-affected areas.