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Solidarity clause

The Solidarity clause, introduced by Article 222 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), provides the option for the EU and EU countries:

  • to act jointly;
  • to prevent the terrorist threat in the territory of an EU country ;
  • to provide assistance to another EU country which is the victim of a natural or man-made disaster.

The clause was implemented as anticipated following the terrorist attacks in Madrid in March 2004.

In 2014, the EU adopted a decision laying down the rules and procedures for the operation of the solidarity clause. It ensures that all the parties concerned at national and at EU levels work together to respond quickly, effectively and consistently in the event of terrorist attacks or natural or man-made disasters.

The European Union Solidarity Fund is an instrument financing operations in the field of civil protection first created in 2002. Under revised rules adopted in 2014, working procedures have been simplified and eligibility criteria clarified and extended to cover drought.