Dutch and Belgian army soldiers for EUBG 2018 EU Battle Group

The Netherlands will continue its contribution to the German-led multinational NATO battle group in Lithuania in 2018. It will also contribute to the rapidly deployable NATO Response Force (NRF) and EU Battlegroup (EUBG) combat units in collaboration with the Belgian army.

Dutch and Belgian army soldiers for EUBG 2018 EU Battle Group 925 001
Dutch soldier at training exercise for EUBG 2018 (Picture source doppeladler.com)

The EU also has combat units numbering approximately 3,000 military personnel on stand-by. This battlegroup (EUBG) is equipped with all the required specialisations, such as combat support, logistics and transport. It is capable of conducting missions worldwide, ranging in duration from 30 up to 120 days. In principle, the possible deployment areas will be within a 6,000 kilometres radius of Brussels.

Battlegroups allow the EU to rapidly and robustly intervene in countries where the situation is threatening to get out of hand or has already done so. EU Battlegroups can also be deployed for evacuation operations and humanitarian aid operations.

In 2018, the Netherlands will form the EUBG together with Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg and Austria. The Dutch contribution comprises parts of the headquarters of 13 Light Armoured Brigade and an infantry battalion with combat support and logistic support. In the first half of 2018, the Netherlands will also have command of the EUBG.

For the first half of 2018, Netherlands will command the EUBG (European Union Battle Group) while Belgium will be in charge for the second half of the year. Around 900 Belgian soldiers will be part for the EUBG 2018 including two NH90 helicopters, the Netherlands will provide infrastructure and communications for the EUBG headquarters and a Cougar helicopter.