“It is a very important to Portugal and the European Union (EU), extremely relevant to what we can do to better help Mozambique”, said the Army's brigadier general, current deputy general director of National Defense Policy at the Ministry of National Defense and professor at the Military Academy.
Lemos Pires also highlighted that: “as an European”, he is “very proud of European solidarity” in helping Mozambique, “simultaneously in terms of security and development”. "I think this help that the EU is giving is very important", which is part of the "values it defends, and in practice, it does: helping to bring peace and development", he said.
Entitled EUTM Mozambique, the mission approved on 12 July in Brussels by the EU's Foreign Affairs ministers is starting to be prepared now, but it will be fully operational by the end of October, the date from which the two years of its mandate will count.
“The mission is intended to be fully operational from the end of October. By then we will have everything up and running, with the military of the various EU nations on the ground, and everything will happen. Until then, it is a phase of preparation and development”, explained Lemos Pires.
“Today it is political authorization, then military planning follows. There are a number of details that are not yet defined. But there is no doubt what a great mission it is. The mission is to prepare rapid intervention special forces units from the Navy and the Army of Mozambique”, he said.
The Portuguese armed forces are familiar with this type of force, which they have deployed to various theaters of conflict, said the brigadier general, citing the examples of the Central African Republic or Afghanistan.
"The EU will train these units, that is, it will prepare them, equip them with non-lethal equipment, and prepare them as best as possible so that these forces are able to face any type of challenge in the north, in Cabo Delgado”, said Lemos Pires.