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Political and Security Committee (PSC)

The Political and Security Committee (COPS) is the permanent body in the field of common foreign and security policy mentioned in Article 38 of the Treaty on European Union.

It is made up of Ambassadors from the 27 Member States. Its remit is:

  • to monitor the international situation in the areas covered by the common foreign and security policy (CFSP);
  • to contribute to the definition of policies;
  • to monitor implementation of the decisions taken under the responsibility of the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

Under the responsibility of the Council and the High Representative, the Committee exercises political control and strategic direction of crisis management operations. It may thus be authorised to take decisions on the practical management of a crisis. It is assisted by a Politico-Military Group, a Committee for Civilian Aspects of Crisis Management, and the Military Committee (MC) and Military Staff (MS).

Following the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam, the Helsinki European Council of December 1999 approved the establishment of COPS. The Committee was originally temporary but became a standing body after the Nice European Council of December 2000.

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