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Spain's military deployment around the world: an unprecedented issue of troops and a wide geographical presence

ABC's defence correspondent, Esteban Villarejo, participates in the Global Affairs & Strategic Studies

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Esteban Villarejo during the lecture PHOTO: Manuel Castells
26/11/18 12:02 Blanca Rodriguez

issue "We find ourselves in an unprecedented moment: Spain has never had such a high number of troops and such a varied geographical presence," said ABC's defence correspondent, Esteban Villarejo, at the University of Navarra.

The lecture, which addressed Spain's military deployment in the world, was organised by the programs of study strategic centre Global Affairs & Strategic Studies, with the participation of students from Degree at International Office as well as senior researchers from different Schools of the academic centre.

Esteban Villarejo reviewed the recent history of the Spanish army, from Afghanistan to the present day, highlighting those missions that "marked a before and after" in foreign relations with other powers, such as, among others, mission statement in Angola, the Balkans and Iraq. He also spoke about defence policy and the defence industry, and the operations carried out abroad.

"These operations are a diplomatic weapon, but also a budgetary one", the journalist recalled, alluding to the subsidies for participation in international missions. "In a decade there have been sixteen missions, and now (between international and diplomatic missions) there are 21 in progress".

This growth is also evident in the development of the weapons systems deployed on missions: from troops and vehicles to employment and support with Patriot missiles, tanks and combat aircraft, drones, Chinook and Cougar helicopters.

Likewise, Esteban Villarejo, author of the blog 'Por Tierra, Mar y Aire', explained the tasks carried out by the Spanish army in its different operations, such as the training of military personnel to combat terrorism, its intervention against human trafficking, or its dissuasive tasks on the fringes core topic.