Today marks the commencement of MILEX 24, the European Union's military exercise aimed at bolstering crisis management and operational deployment capabilities. Led by Lieutenant General

Michiel van der Laan, Director General of the European Union Military Staff (DGEUMS), the exercise kicked off at the Military Planning and Conduct Capability (MPCC) Operations Headquarters (OHQ) in Brussels.

Building upon the success of the inaugural EU Live Exercise (LIVEX) in October 2023, MILEX 24 represents the next phase in operationalizing the EU Rapid Deployment Capacity (EU RDC) and enhancing the MPCC's role. The exercise, which commenced on 8 April and will run until 3 May 2024, involves planners from strategic and operational headquarters in Brussels and Strasbourg collaborating on deployment scenarios for the EU Rapid Reaction Force beyond EU borders.

Contextually, the Strategic Compass for Security and Defence aims to establish a fully operational EU RDC capable of deploying up to 5000 troops swiftly in non-permissive environments by 2025. MILEX 24 aligns with this objective, facilitating regular live EU military exercises to bolster the EU's response capabilities to external conflicts and crises.

MILEX 24 entails meticulous planning and coordination, leveraging military forces and capabilities from EU Member States. Over the next four weeks, emphasis will be placed on Crisis Response Planning at both the military strategic and operational levels, with the MPCC in Brussels and EUROCORPS in Strasbourg providing respective headquarters.

Linked to MILEX 24 is an EU RDC LIVEX scheduled to take place in Bergen, Germany, from 26 November to 10 December 2024. This exercise, conducted under the German-led Exercise EUROPEAN CHALLENGE 2024, will train EU Battlegroup Force Package 25 for rapid response operations in predefined scenarios.

Lieutenant General van der Laan emphasized the importance of exercises like MILEX 24 in enhancing the EU's decision-making capacity and readiness to respond to external conflicts. He underscored the significance of continually refining operational processes to strengthen the EU's ability to safeguard its citizens, values, and interests.

MILEX 24 exemplifies the EU's commitment to reinforcing its Rapid Deployment Capacity and ensuring preparedness to address security threats effectively. Through rigorous exercises and training, the EU aims to foster cohesion, unity of effort, and resilience in the face of evolving challenges. Photo by Defensie, Wikimedia commons.