Analysis of Development Co-operation
  Documents   Useful links   FAQ   Contact us  
Treaties Newsflash
EC Treaty
Treaty on European Union
Treaty of Amsterdam
Treaty of Nice
EUobserver - Ashton secures deal on new diplomatic service - By Honor Mahoney 25.03.10 - EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton has finalised her blueprint for the EU's first ever diplomatic service after the European Commission on Wednesday (24 March) agreed to give her key powers over the EU's multi-billion euro annual development budget.

European Voice - Who controls foreign affairs? - By Toby Vogel, 25.02.10: Rifts emerge over new diplomatic corps and member states are upset by pre-emptive strike by Barroso.

European Voice - A vision in line with EU member states - By Toby Vogel, 25.02.10: The EU's foreign policy chief's visions for the EEAS is more in line with member states than the Commission.

Main Menu

RSS News Feeds

Article 26 PDF Print E-mail
1. The European Council shall identify the Union's strategic interests, determine the objectives of and define general guidelines for the common foreign and security policy, including for matters with defence implications. It shall adopt the necessary decisions.

If international developments so require, the President of the European Council shall convene an extraordinary meeting of the European Council in order to define the strategic lines of the Union's policy in the face of such developments.

2. The Council shall frame the common foreign and security policy and take the decisions necessary for defining and implementing it on the basis of the general guidelines and strategic lines defined by the European Council.

The Council and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy shall ensure the unity, consistency and effectiveness of action by the Union.

3. The common foreign and security policy shall be put into effect by the High Representative and by the Member States, using national and Union resources.


  • The common foreign and security policy (CFSP) remains an intergovernmental area of competence.
  • Paragraph 2 sets out that the High Representative of the Enion for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy will implement the CFSP.
  • Paragraph 2 also sets out that resources for implementing the CFSP will come from both Member States and the EU's own resources.


  • The CFSP was first introduced by the Treaty of Maastricht in 1992.
  • If the EU is to provide resources for the implementation of the CFSP it is important that a specific is budget is allocated for this. Resources for the implementation of the CFSP must not be taken from other external policy areas such as development cooperation or humanitarian aid.
  • The allocation of a spcific budget for the CFSP would reduce the risk of funds which are intended to finance long-term development policy being used to finance short-term security priorities.
  • The Lisbon Treaty sets all of the of the various components of the EU's external actions as independent but equal policy areas. To allocate funds which are intended to finance one policy area (e.g. development cooperation) in order to finance another (e.g. the CFSP), would, therefore, contravene the spirit of the Treaty.