At the launch seminar of the European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats on 6 September in Helsinki, Finnish Foreign Minister Timo Soini gave a speech in which he congratulated the Hybrid Centre on reaching initial operational capability and thanked the other participating countries for their involvement in launching the Centre.
“The commitment of the participating countries, the EU and NATO creates confidence in the future of this cooperation”, he noted.
As his concrete initiative to Hybrid CoE, minister Soini invited the Centre to promote EU–NATO cooperation in the assessment of hybrid threats and risks in the Baltic Sea region. This was a joint initiative with the Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström.
“If launched by the hybrid centre, this initiative could serve as a model for developing the assessment in other regions, such as the Mediterranean or Black Sea,” Soini said.
At their Press Point on Hybrid Threats at Hybrid CoE in Helsinki, EU Commissioner Julian King and NATO Assistant Secretary General Arndt Freytag von Loringhoven endorsed the initiative of Foreign Ministers Soini and Wallström.
Hybrid CoE Director Matti Saarelainen viewed also positively the initiative about a hybrid risk assessment in the Baltic Sea region in cooperation between the Centre of Excellence, the EU and NATO.
– The Hybrid Centre of Excellence is ready to host an expert meeting already during this autumn. We are willing to convene staff representatives of the EU and NATO to a joint workshop to assess hybrid threats and risks in the Baltic Sea region, director states.