European Security Solidarity, National Sovereignty and Brexit. EU Member States Discursive Responses to Brexit

Anna Maria Friis Kristensen

The British vote to leave the EU, has far reaching consequences for the EU and for the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP), as the UK is one of the major military actors in the EU, and have been driving in the process to establish the CSDP. Over the last few months we have seen the EU's representatives, and the EU member states' heads of state, react to this vote, and in particular to PM Theresa May recent decision to pursue so called 'hard Brexit'. In order to better understand the consequences of Brexit in the area of the CSDP, the EU's response to Brexit, and the possible future development, integration and practices of the CSDP, this paper will look at the discourses, narratives and practices surrounding Brexit within the EU and its member states, in the area of the CSDP.One of the EU's responses have been the presentation and publication of the EU's new Global Strategy for the European Union's Foreign and Security Policy, less than a week after the Brexit vote, and furthermore the implementation document in November 2016. The publication of theses policy documents underscores the EU's unit in the field of security and defence. This paper will look at how the EU and its members states respond and react to the Brexit referendum and the (pre)negotiations around the Brexit. The paper will in particular focus on the articulations of the meaning and consequences of Brexit of the member states, France and Sweden. It will focus on core concepts such as EU unity, security solidarity, mutual assistance and national sovereignty, and the production of the EU as a coherent and powerful security actor in the aftermath of Brexit.

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