By John Ensor •
Published: 05 Aug 2023 • 11:07
Credit: Policia Nacional.es
Last April, the National Military Museum in Soesterberg, Netherlands, hosted the fifth and final Conference of the EXERTER project.
The project, initiated on June 1, 2018, aimed to create a European network of experts in explosives deactivation and evaluate explosive devices through collaborative working groups. The Spanish Ministry of the Interior funded the project with €117,175, and it involved 22 organizations from 13 EU countries, according to a report published by Policia Nacional, Saturday, August 5
During the five-year project, various aspects were analysed, including research actions, field experiences, legal implications, and standardization efforts. The project focused on evaluating threats to the civil security of the EU, specifically preparing personnel experienced in handling terrorist acts at a European level.
The National Police, in collaboration with the National Institute of Aerospace Technology (INTA) of the Ministry of Defense and the Guardia Civil, participated in the EXERTER project through its General Subdirectorate of Information Systems and Communications for Security (SGSICS). The project was further supported by the R&D Service of the General Logistics and Innovation Subdirectorate.
To enhance preparedness and response to terrorist events involving explosive devices, experts from different countries evaluated various scenarios of terrorist attacks in Europe. One notable event was a pilot scenario organized in Madrid, where the terrorist attack that occurred at Atocha station on March 11, 2004, was recreated.
Throughout the project, several milestones were achieved, including 42 deliverables, 5 consortium conferences, 15 technical meetings, 5 pilot scenario evaluations, and the review of 300 research projects. A network of 300 external experts actively participated, and EXERTER was represented in 41 exhibitions, conferences, and meetings.
The EXERTER project aligned with the goals of the Horizon Europe Program, the EU’s framework for research and innovation from 2021 to 2027. Like its predecessor, Horizon 2020, the program aimed to strengthen scientific and technological foundations, promote competitiveness across all Member States, and address societal challenges. Horizon 2020, during the 2014-2020 period, invested €76,880 million in various phases, ranging from basic research to market-oriented activities.
Overall, the EXERTER project played a significant role in enhancing European civil security against terrorism, fostering cooperation among EU countries, and equipping personnel with the expertise to handle explosive threats effectively. By utilizing the Horizon Europe Program, the EU continued its commitment to research and innovation, driving scientific advancements and bolstering its global competitiveness.
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
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