The demarcation line between the civil and military components of crisis management is supposed to help set the record straight. This is because, according to the Amsterdam Treaty's Article 28, civil expenditure comes under the EU budget, "except for such expenditure arising from operations having military or defence implications and cases where the Council acting unanimously decides otherwise." The last part of the sentence " where the Council acting unanimously decides otherwise" is vague enough to make the Commission feel insecure. The institution fears in creating the management crisis fund ESDP will take over part of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). It is less the scope of the current CFSP activities that is being called into question (Euro 30 million or thereabouts in payment appropriations) than the budgetary management of the new instruments now being planned, such as the international police agency, 5,000 police officers in due course, some of which will be operational in 2003.Michaele Schreyer, the European Commissioner for the Budget, is quite clear on the issue, arguing: "Civil expenditure, including funding for the police, may be covered by the EU budget." The Commission agrees that appropriations available in the CFSP budget lines, under the financial perspective for the 2000-2006 period, are not enough to pay for all the EU's potential activities. "If what is involved is just military spending, there are no grounds for challenging the intervention of the crisis management fund. But if this overlaps with joint actions conducted hitherto under the Community banner or it is likely to do so, as in the light of certain police operations, this is a real concern ", according to a member of the Commission's legal service.The COREPER talks have revealed that the thin yellow line between civil and military matters may take the form of a positive list that Pierre de Boissieu, Deputy Secretary-General of the Council and the man in charge of this matter, wants to be as long as possible. Anything featured on this list will be covered by the crisis management fund.Crisis management fund.Without awaiting for some light to be thrown on the...

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