Aims of the Security Partnership

The UK is unconditionally committed to Europe’s security and we will continue to be the EU’s staunch ally as a global actor. The UK strongly believes that our withdrawal from the EU should not impact upon the safety and security of UK or EU citizens. This is why, in light of the shared threats we face to the security of our citizens and our way of life, the UK and the EU have a mutual interest in agreeing a new security partnership that reflects our extensive experience of cooperation, our values and our strategic goals.

Once the UK has left the EU both sides will independently decide where to work together. ln many cases we will chose to do so, because it will achievethe best outcomes for maintaining peace and security in Europe and around the world. Our commitment to protecting our citizens makes it incumbent on governments to make decisions based on security impact, not precedent. We also start from a place of deep operational cooperation and must therefore agree a framework that allows this to evolve to new threats and responses, with a decision on both sides. The UK will continue to work closely with the. Devolved Administrations and the Governments of Gibraltar, the Crown Dependencies and the other Overseas Territories.

Reflecting the breadth of our existing relationship, the future security partnership should include both law enforcement and criminal justice cooperation, as well as collaboration on foreign policy, security and defence and development, whilst recognising that the safeguarding of national security remains the sole responsibility of the UK and the Member States. This should be a partnership that respects both the decision-making autonomy of the EU and the sovereignty of the UK.

Across law enforcement and criminal justice cooperation, we are advocating a relationship that puts preserving our shared operational capabilities first. This includes maintaining the wealth of day-to-day cooperation that has been built up by the UK and the EU to keep our people safe – from practical cooperation to bring criminals to justice, to participation in agencies focused on tackling serious and organised crime, to the continued exchange and analysis of vital data.

ln the areas of foreign policy, security and defence and development, we are proposing continued collaboration and coordination to tackle shared threats where it is in the UK’s and the EU’s mutual interest. This means consulting regularly on the global challenges we face and coordinating how we use the levers we hold where our interests align, for example with regards to restrictive measures. lt also means working together as global actors and developing our capabilities to most effectively tackle our current and future threats, and promote the prosperity of UK and EU industries.

The UK is also proposing that the security partnership takes in wider forms of cooperation, including on asylum and illegal migration, cyber security, counter-terrorism, civil protection, and health security. The partnership should make use of the range of tools at the UK and EU’s disposal, from diplomacy to development assistance.

Reaching this agreement will require flexibility and creativity on both sides. Building a partnership that delivers this breadth and depth of cooperation will require the UK and the EU to draw on but go beyond existing precedents. lt is in our collective interest to maintain our existing capabilities and avoid operational gaps or barriers to cooperation that would harm our collective security and put public safety at risk.