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Savings during 2015 will reduce operational capabilities of Belgian Army.

Belgian Army General  Gerard Van Caelenberge

Belgian Army General Gerard Van Caelenberge

The Belgian Army will not lay off soldiers during 2015, but will greatly reduce its operating expenses and investments next year, in order to achieve 225 million euros in savings imposed by the Belgian government,  said Tuesday the head of the Defence General Gerard Van Caelenberge. Next year, investments will be reduced to zero, also reduced recruitment and training,  maintenance work spread over time and reduced operating costs, with reduced involvment in Belgia´s  operational commitments overseas, said the Armt General during a news conference in Brussels.

Some missions abroad will be maintained – such as participation in the international coalition against the terrorist group Islamic State (IS), but only for six months because there will be “more money” starting in July 2015 . Also belgia will continue with its new NATO mission “Resolute Support” in Afghanistan, sending a few military ships to Eastern Europe and Baltic Sea to reassure NATO countries is worried about two things: the attitude of Russia and the assistance to African countries in the context of military partnership programs (MPP).

The end of the mission of the Belgian peacekeepers to Lebanon next month and that of training the Malian army (EUTM) in mid-2015 will not be compensated by other commitments, said General Van Caelenberge.