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Western European Union

This collection contains the Proceedings of the Assembly of Western European Union (WEU), also called the European Security and Defence Assembly. Founded in 1954, the WEU emerged as one of several inter-related European international organizations which developed in the post-war period. The original members were Belgium, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands. The WEU operated as a forum for the coordination of matters of European defence, security and military cooperation. From 1954 to 1973, the WEU was instrumental in helping develop consultation and co-operation in Western Europe. There was a revival of the debate on European security in the early 1980s, and member states looked to the WEU as a framework for discussion. After the end of the Cold War, WEU institutions and activities were transferred to the Common Security and Defence Policy of the European Union (EU). Based on cooperation with the EU and NATO, the WEU became the primary defense institution of the EU in the 1990s, giving up that role in 2001. The WEU was dissolved in 2010, by which time it had 28 members.