Turkey has transferred the leadership of NATO’s highest military force, the Very High Readiness Joint Force (VJTF), to France.
This is what the Atlantic alliance announced on December 29, specifying that the transfer took place on December 25, and that France will take over the leadership of the VJTF from January 1, 2022. The website Security International reports that.
“The Very High Readiness Joint Task Force is a substantial contribution to our collective defense and French leadership is a strong demonstration of commitment and capability,” said NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, adding that at a time of unprecedented security challenges such as this, there should be no misunderstanding of the resolve of the alliance, whose members are united to defend and protect all allies.
The VJTF is the highest readiness element of NATO’s 40,000-strong response force, allowing troops to be deployed within days. This force was created in 2014 in response to Russian aggression against Ukraine and crises in the Middle East. Its leadership rotates among member countries each year, and there are several states that provide troops for the multinational force.
In 2022, a 3,500-strong Franco-German brigade will serve as the core of the VJTF, while Poland, Spain and Portugal will also join the troops. Turkey has assumed command in 2021, while Germany will take over from France in 2023.