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European Corps
Active 1993–present
Branch Army
Type Multinational military headquarters
Size 1,000 troops in HQ plus 5,000 troops in the Franco-German Brigade (although the number may change in relation to specific military operations)
Garrison/HQ HQ Strasbourg
Multinational Command Support Brigade – Strasbourg
Multiple earmarked units of framework nations
Commanding General Lieutenant General Alfredo Ramirez Fernandez
Deputy Commanding General Major General Eric Hautecloque-Raysz
Chief of Staff Brigadier General Franz Xaver Pfrengle

The European Corps, sometimes shortened as Eurocorps, is an intergovernmental army corps of approximately 1,000 soldiers stationed in Strasbourg, France. The corps had its headquarters established in May 1992, activated in October 1993 and declared operational in 1995. The nucleus of the force is the Franco-German Brigade established in 1987.[1]


  • Participating countries 1
  • Organization 2
    • Command structure 2.1
    • Subordinate units 2.2
      • Operational Command 2.2.1
      • Affiliated units and formations 2.2.2
  • Deployments 3
  • See also 4
  • Notes 5
  • External links 6

Participating countries

Five countries participate in the corps as member nations.[2] Additionally, four states are associated, and have thus pledged to contribute personnel to the staff.:[2][3] Poland was accepted as a member in 2010. This will become effective from 1 January 2016.[2] Poland will send around 120 soldiers to Strasbourg. On 25 February 2003, Austria and Finland signed a treaty which allowed them to send staff to the headquarters of the corps.[4] Finland remained an associated nation of the corps until 2005, and Austria until 2011.[2] In addition, the Netherlands and United Kingdom have sent liaison officers to the headquarters of the corps.[4][5]

Member nations:[2]

Associated nations:[2]

  •  Greece – since 2002
  •  Italy – since 2009
  •  Poland – since 2002 (framework nation as of 1 January 2016)
  •  Turkey – since 2002

Former associated nations:[2]


The European Corps is not subordinate to any other military organization.[1] It is deployed on the authority of the Common Committee representing the member nations,[6][7] the Chief of Defense, and the Political Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This committee considers requests for support from multinational organizations such as the UN, NATO, OSCE or EU. The Corps can also be deployed at the request of the framework nations.

Command structure

Beret and badge of the corps

The headquarters of the corps is based in Strasbourg near the Franco-German border, the seat of several European institutions. The headquarters contains the following units:[8]

  • A Command Group, based in Quartier Aubert de Vincelles, consisting of the Commanding General, the Deputy Commanding General, the Chief of Staff, the Deputies Chief of Staff, the Air and Navy representatives, the legal advisers, a public affairs office, a medical adviser and a political adviser (only during engagement).
  • A staff of approximately 350 providing support to the command group. The staff includes also officers from Poland, Greece, Italy and Turkey.
  • A multi-national Command Support Brigade is co-located in Strasbourg (Quartier Aubert de Vincelles). This brigade is separate and subordinate to the Corps headquarters and provides additional support when the Corps is deployed. The brigade is formed from units provided by the nations on a case-by-case basis but has a permanent headquarters of 80 personnel.
  • A Headquarters Support Battalion (subordinated to the multi-national Command Support Brigade), based in Strasbourg (Quartier Lizé), providing protection, transport, food, etc. to the headquarters. This battalion consists of approximately 500 soldiers but can be significantly reinforced in case of commitments.

German and French were the official languages at the corps till August 2002. English is now the working language.[9]

Subordinate units

Operational Command

The Franco-German Brigade, with 5000 troops, is the only military formation permanently under the operational command of corps. The brigade is stationed in [11] The five framework countries have earmarked the following units and formations to the corps:

Affiliated units and formations

A parade of the corps in Strasbourg, 2013

In addition to the Franco-German Brigade, a number of nations have earmarked units or formations that they have affiliated to the corps HQ. These do not come under the permanent command of corps but rather can be provided to the corps for specific operations. For example,

  • French Contribution
    • A "Etat-Major de Force" (EMF) (equivalent to a divisional HQ)
  • German Contribution
  • Belgian Contribution
  • Spanish Contribution
    • The "Cuartel General del Mando de Fuerzas Pesadas" (Heavy Forces Command) in Burgos where the 1st Mechanized Division is stationed.
  • Luxembourg Contribution
    • A reconnaissance company (180 soldiers) based in Diekirch, composed of two reconnaissance platoons, an anti-tank platoon and a logistics support element. This unit will probably be integrated into the Belgian contribution during operations.

Except for the Franco-German Brigade and the staff of the Multinational Command Support Brigade (MNCS Bde) who are permanently under operational command of the headquarters, these national contributions remain under national command in peacetime. They can become fully subordinated only after Transfer of Authority has been decided by member states.

The size and type of corps units required in operations depends on the nature and scope of assigned missions, likely deployment and the expected operational outcome. In the case that all earmarked national contributions are committed, the corps would theoretically comprise approximately 60,000.

Beret badge


The corps participated in peacekeeping missions in Bosnia and led KFOR III in Kosovo from 18 April 2000 to October 2000 and led the ISAF6 Force in Afghanistan from 9 August 2004 to 11 February 2005.[12] From 1 July 2006, to 10 January 2007, the headquarters of the corps was the land component stand by element of the NATO Response Force 7. From 1 July 2010 to 10 January 2011, the headquarters of the corps was the land component stand by element of the NATO Response Force 15 (NRF 15). In 2012, the corps has deployed to ISAF in Afghanistan. In the second semester the Eurocorps is supporting Germany with 57 soldiers in the EU mission EUTM Mali.

See also


  1. ^ a b "Eurocorps' official website / History". Retrieved 23 February 2008. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Participation". Eurocorps. Retrieved 18 February 2014. 
  3. ^ Comp. Domröse, Hans-Lothar 2011: „Zwei Jahre Kommandierender General des Eurokorps. Eine persönliche Bilanz." In: Europäische Sicherheit Nr. 10/2011, p. 13–16.
  4. ^ a b "Eurokorps begrüßt Österreich und Finnland".  
  5. ^ "Going International: Das Eurokorps - ein Schritt nach Europa".  
  6. ^ Belgium, France, Germany, Luxemburg and Spain
  7. ^ "The Common Committee on Eurocorps' official website". Archived from the original on 5 February 2008. Retrieved 23 February 2008. 
  8. ^ p. 894, Kleine, Maxim, Integrated Bi- and Multinational Military Units in Europe, in: Georg Nolte (Editor), European Military Law Systems, Walter de Gruyter, 2003.
  9. ^ Directive No. 2 pour le Général commandant le Corps européen from 14 November 1994: Langues au Corps européen.
  10. ^ )"in German"History of the Franco-German Brigade (. Archived from the original on 12 December 2007. Retrieved 23 February 2008. 
  11. ^ France-USA.
  12. ^ "International Security Assistance Force - ISAF VI on Eurocorps' official website". Archived from the original on 12 January 2008. Retrieved 23 February 2008. 

External links

  • Official website
  • A proposed evolution in the Eurocorps and ESDI in NATO (French language)
  • A proposed evolution in the Eurocorps and ESDI in NATO
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