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Heads of Regional Secretariats Meet in Brussels

EU CBRN Risk Mitigation CoE Initiative

Brussels -


Funded by the European Union

The Second Meeting of the Heads of the Regional Secretariats of the European Union Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence (EU CBRN CoE) was held in Brussels from 21-22 October 2014.

The Regional Secretariats play a crucial role in the regional implementation of the Initiative. Following a bottom-up and voluntary approach, they support partner countries in various activities such as creating National CBRN Teams; drafting National CBRN Action Plans; monitoring ongoing regional and international EU CBRN CoE projects, assisting in the development of new project proposals and in the organisation of Regional Round-Table Meetings.

40 representatives from the 8 regions of the world involved in the EU CBRN CoE Initiative, the European Commission, European Union External Action Service and UNICRI took part in the meeting in Brussels. The meeting represented an important occasion for the Heads of Secretariat to share their expertise on the reinforcement and extension of the activities taking place in their regions, and to exchange views on the lessons learned from the regional activities and projects.

Throughout the meeting the Heads of Secretariats had fruitful discussions and tackled important topics, including strengthening the engagement of local experts, identifying ‘Regional CBRN Champions’, and further promoting the involvement of EU Delegations and EU Member State Embassies. The Heads also identified the need to support National CBRN Teams that are in charge of the implementation of the Initiative at the national level as a critical issue. Moreover, the Regional Secretariats conjointly promoted new tools to facilitate the interaction with Project Implementers and the gathering of feedback from National Focal Points involved in ongoing projects.

The meeting also focused on the prevention, preparedness and response of the current Ebola health crisis which is severely affecting West Africa. The meeting ended with a visit and a demonstration at the Defence Laboratories Department (DLD) of the Federal Orientation Laboratory (FOL).

About the EU CBRN CoE Initiative. Mitigating CBRN risks of criminal, accidental or natural origin requires a high level of cooperation and coordination at international, regional and national level. The EU CBRN CoE initiative facilitates cooperation and enhances CBRN policies and capabilities by creating a network of regional initiatives to support the development of national CBRN policies. It is based on a voluntary basis and bottom-up approach where partner countries define their priorities and needs with a regional cross border dimension. The initiative aims at strengthening regional security by sharing good practices and capabilities, developing guidelines as well as identifying and deploying resources to respond to the needs identified by partner countries.

The EU CBRN CoE Initiative is funded by the European Commission and implemented in cooperation with the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI). The European External Action Service is also involved in the follow-up of the initiative. The initiative is developed with the technical support of relevant international and regional organisations, the EU Member States and other stakeholders, through coherent and effective cooperation at the national, regional and international level. The initiative involves 48 countries in 8 regions of the world.

For more information:

CBRN Centres of Excellence website:

European Commission, Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace website: