Europe’s refugee crisis has revived plans for a controversial pan-EU border and coast guard force to patrol countries like Greece and Italy which are struggling to cope with the wave of migrants.
But analysts suspect frontline nations will resist ceding sovereign border control rights to other European Union states and that Brussels will have to settle for a far less ambitious proposal.
“This is a little bit like calling for a European army.
An EU army is Germany’s ‘long term goal’ according to one of its ministers.
Ursula von der Leyen called for defence cooperation to be strengthened so that the continent can respond quickly to international crises.
But her comments will raise fears the German government will back the call by European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker for an EU-wide fighting force.
In March, Mr Juncker said the EU needed its own army to address the claim that it is not ‘taken entirely seriously’ on the international stage.