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European Training Mission in Mali receives visit from its European military commander

Bamako, Mali
September 9, 2023
  • Lieutenant General Van der Laan has shared a working day with the military members of the Spanish-led contingent.

The Director of the European Military Planning and Conduct Capability, Dutch Lieutenant General Michiel Van der Laan, visited the European Union Training Mission in Mali (EUTM Mali).

The visit began with the presentation of mission medals to ten soldiers, seven Irish and three Spanish. The commander thanked the deployed European soldiers for their work and efforts.

After the ceremony, Lieutenant General Van der Laan was able to see first-hand the current situation of the mission and the country. He visited the EUTM Mali General Staff, met with the ambassadors of the states and delegations that the European Union has in Bamako and with the military representatives of the nations (seniors) participating in the military mission, to which Spain has been committed since 2013.

The Lieutenant General received an update on the Mission's activities, challenges and main ongoing projects. He also attended a practical demonstration and static display of the capabilities of the Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) equipment of the Force Protection unit.

Lieutenant General Van der Laan, who took command in June, is making his first visit to European Union missions to learn about their status and the challenges ahead.

The Military Planning and Conduct Capability (MPCC) is responsible for the operational planning and conduct of European Union (EU) non-executive military missions.

It currently leads the EU Training Missions (EUTM) in Mali, Somalia, Central African Republic, Mozambique and the EU Military Assistance Mission (EUMAM) for Ukraine.

The MPCC was established in June 2017 with the aim of enabling the EU to react more quickly, efficiently and effectively as a security provider beyond its borders.