Upon the signature of the Treaty for the European Union in Maasticht, in December 1991, and with a view to establish a common collective approach to security and to charter a common defense policy, the leaders of the member- states decided to create a Common Foreign and Security Policy. In this framework the Helsinki Headline Goal was formulated, according to which it was decided:
- to develop of a European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP), orientated mainly towards crisis management.
- to put together for this purpose a joint European force of 60,000 men, with respective naval and air forces.
The development of this force is based on national and multinational forces (European contingents), which the member states should contribute (separately or jointly) on a voluntary basis.
Greece's national contribution in the accomplishment of the Military Headline Goal consists of one Headquarter at Brigade level, which can be used as Operational Headquarters (OHO), with the possibility of being reinforced by the military personnel of other EU member-states and a Brigade of 3.550 men, with a dual use capacity (Motorised or Light Infantry Brigade, depending on the requirements.)
Furthermore, Greece contributes with one Geographic Support Unit, by providing specialised support in matters of civil and military cooperation, accessibilty capability to civil telecommunications infrastructure and to operational analyses means.
In terms of naval forces, Greece participates with 2 frigates, 4 missile boats, one fleet oiler, one oceanographic survey vessel, and two amphibious warfare ships, one mine sweeper, one fleet support ship, one submarine and one naval cooperation aircraft.
In air forces, Greece's contribution consists in 30 F-16 and Mirage 2000 fighters, 6 reconnaissance and surveillance RF-4 aircraft and 4 C-130 transport aircraft, along with a PATRIOT wing, 2 air defence wings and an SAR unit.