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Putting the EU's solidarity clause into practice

Council Decision 2014/415/EU on the EU's implementation of the solidarity clause


Council Decision 2014/415/EU of 24 June 2014 on the arrangements for the implementation by the Union of the solidarity clause


The solidarity clause enables the European Union (EU) and EU countries to act jointly in assisting another EU country being the object of a terrorist attack or the victim of a natural or man-made disaster.


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


The clause applies:

to disasters and terrorist attacks within the EU territory, whether on land, sea or in the air;

to the protection of infrastructure (such as offshore gas and oil rigs) in EU countries' territorial waters;

irrespective of whether the crisis originates inside or outside the EU.

Invoking the solidarity clause

The EU country affected may invoke the solidarity clause if it considers that its own response capacities are overwhelmed.

It must address its request to the Presidency of the Council and to the President of the European Commission by means of the Commission's Emergency Response Centre (ERCC).

EU reaction mechanism

Once the solidarity clause has been invoked, the EU mobilises all sector-specific, operational, policy or financial instruments and structures at its disposal, such as, for example, the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, the instruments under the EU Internal Security Strategy and the structures developed in the context of the EU's Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP).

The Council ensures the political and strategic direction of the response, taking full account of the Commission's and the High Representative's competences. It immediately activates the Integrated Political Crisis Response arrangements (IPCR) to ensure a consistent reaction at EU level.

In parallel, the Commission and the EU's High Representative:

identify all the instruments and capabilities that can best help to respond to the crisis;

make proposals to the Council for exceptional measures or measures in support of EU countries' rapid reaction.


The decision applies from 20 July 2014.


The EU's solidarity clause implements Article 222 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU).



Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Decision 2014/415/EU



OJ L 192, 1.7.2014, p 53-58




OJ L 221, 25.7.2014,p. 26




OJ L 275, 17.9.2014, p.7

last update 21.09.2015