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Portuguese in Takuba. A few officers today, more by the end of 2021

(B2) Two Portuguese officers arrived in Menaka, Task Force HQ Takuba, a week ago

(credit: Portuguese Armed Forces - B2 Archives)

The rest of the Portuguese detachment should not however arrive before the end of the year in this European force deployed in the area of ​​the three borders. This detachment should have between fifteen and twenty members of the special forces, according to our information.

A delay that is not due to a lack of will from Lisbon. On the contrary. But which is explained by reasons " legal »(1). « The Portuguese Constitution is very firm on the deployment of soldiers in other countries “, told us the Portuguese Minister of Defense, João Gomes Cravinho, in an exclusive interview with B2 this Friday (May 7)*.

« This requires signing a SOFA “, a status of forces agreement, “ with each of the countries: Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso. This is what prevents us today from being there. »

(Nicolas Gros-Verheyde)

* One-on-one interview this Friday (May 7) in Brussels in French

(1) a situation that arises from the story. The end of Salazar's dictatorship during the Blinders' Revolution only dates back to 1974. And Portuguese decolonization was marked by blood and pain, particularly in Angola and Mozambique. Hence a strict limitation of the use of the armed forces outside the national territory.

Next: The EU mission in Mozambique: an emergency situation

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).