The European Union should form its own combined army that could play a role in peacekeeping and preventing conflict, Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani said.
In an interview with Italian newspaper La Stampa, Tajani said that closer European cooperation on defence was a priority for the Forza Italia party that he leads.
“If we want to be peacekeepers in the world, we need a European military. And this is a fundamental precondition to be able to have an effective European foreign policy,” he said in an interview published on Sunday.
“In a world with powerful players like the United States, China, India, Russia – with crises from the Middle East to the Indo-Pacific – Italian, German, French or Slovenian citizens can only be protected by something that already exists, namely the European Union,” he added.