Volume. 11882
Limited EU defense cooperation okayed
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c_330_235_16777215_0___images_stories_edim_01_EU99b.jpgEuropean Union leaders agreed on limited steps toward greater defense cooperation Thursday, but British opposition to separate armed forces for the bloc highlighted differences over how far they can go.
EU leaders, discussing defense at a summit for the first time in five years, called on member states to work together to spread the cost of developing expensive military kit, Reuters reported. 
They pledged to launch projects to develop a European drone by 2020-2025 and to look into a new generation of government satellite communications.
They also promised to increase the continent's air-to-air refueling capacity, after the 2011 Libya conflict demonstrated a shortage of tanker aircraft, and strengthen cyber defense.
Cameron said Britain, one of Europe's most capable military powers but one that has also scaled back spending, would support cooperation but drew the line at a European army.
"It isn't right for the European Union to have capabilities, armies, air forces and the rest of it. We need to get that demarcation correct between cooperation which is right and EU capabilities, which is wrong," he told reporters.
Britain has always been suspicious of giving too big a military role to the EU, fearing it could undermine NATO.

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