The names of operations which are purely or primarily military in form, are given the prefix of either European Union Force (EUFOR), or European Union Naval Force (EU NAVFOR), for terrestrial and naval missions, respectively. EUFOR has been used four times so far: in the Republic of Macedonia from March 2003 to December 2003 as EUFOR Concordia, in Bosnia from 2004 as EUFOR Althea, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2006, and in Chad and the Central African Republic since 2007. These rapid reaction forces are subordinate to the European Union Military Staff, and complements other EU military forces such as Eurocorps, the European Gendarmerie Force, European Maritime Force and EU Battlegroups.
For each operation, an Operational Headquarters (OHQ) is nominated by the appropriate Council decision. The selected OHQ runs the operation at the strategic level and directs the Force Headquarters (FHQ), which carries out the operation on the ground.
Since the first EU operation was deployed in 2003, four types of OHQs have been employed:
To date, five member states have made their national OHQ available as 'parent HQs' for CSDP operations:
Operation Atalanta is for instance managed by Northwood Headquarters.