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12 mars 2015 4 12 /03 /mars /2015 13:50
The Eastern Partnership after Five Years: Time for Deep Rethinking - SEDE
The first five years of the Eastern Partnership have witnessed the most challenging period of relations between the EU and its eastern neighbours since the fall of communism in 1991. The year 2014 was a pivotal one, marked by the signing of Association Agreements with the European Union by three partners countries – Ukraine, Republic of Moldova, and Georgia – but also by Russian military intervention in Ukraine, including the annexation of Crimea. The continued aggression of a revanchist and intransigent Russia has altered the political and social landscape, and the original concept of the Eastern Partnership, however well-intentioned and suitable for a previous era, is not adequate to meet the challenges of 2015 and beyond. Therefore, there is a need for the EU to rethink its policy towards the Eastern Partnership countries and Russia, and build new approaches to suit the new reality. More than ever, the EU needs to focus its attention on relations with those Eastern Partner countries that are willing to cooperate more closely and who truly wish to integrate with the Union, politically, economically and socially. Ukraine, Republic of Moldova, and Georgia should be perceived as more than partners, and the ‘more for more’ approach should be strengthened. Such an approach would send a clear political signal to all parties involved, and make for a better use of limited resources.


 

Study - The Eastern Partnership after Five Years: Time for Deep Rethinking - PE 536.438

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11 mars 2015 3 11 /03 /mars /2015 08:30
Margot Wallström Photo Kristian Pohl - Government Offices of Sweden

Margot Wallström Photo Kristian Pohl - Government Offices of Sweden

 

10.03.2015 Le Monde.fr (AFP)

 

La Suède a décidé de ne pas renouveler son accord de coopération militaire signé avec l'Arabie saoudite en 2005, a annoncé mardi 10 mars le premier ministre social-démocrate, Stefan Löfven. « Il sera rompu », a déclaré M. Löfven à la radio publique SR depuis Kiev, à propos de cet accord qui était controversé au sein de la majorité de gauche en raison de la question des droits de l'homme. Cette décision survient peu après que l'Arabie saoudite a empêché la ministre des affaires étrangères suédoise, Margot Wallström, de prononcer un discours prévu lors d'une réunion de la Ligue arabe au Caire.

 

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10 mars 2015 2 10 /03 /mars /2015 17:50
L'UE doit s'adapter sans plus tarder aux nouveaux défis de sécurité

 

10.03.2015 europarl.europa.eu REF. : 20150309IPR32555
 

L'UE et ses États membres devraient assumer sans plus tarder des responsabilités accrues pour leur sécurité et défense, au vu des niveaux sans précédent d'instabilité aux frontières européennes, selon une résolution adoptée lundi en commission des affaires étrangères. Les pays de l'UE doivent utiliser de manière plus efficace les outils de la politique de sécurité et de défense commune, coordonner leurs actions de sécurité internes et externes, et mettre davantage en commun les ressources.

 

Dans leur résolution annuelle sur la politique de sécurité et de défense commune (PSDC), les députés demandent l'adoption d'une stratégie commune pour relever les nouveaux défis de la sécurité de l'UE. Ils estiment que le Conseil européen de juin 2015 doit relancer de manière claire et concrète la réflexion stratégique, déjà en cours au sein du service européen pour l'action extérieure et du Conseil, sur une nouvelle stratégie européenne de sécurité. L'objectif est de répondre aux nouveaux scénarios géostratégiques, aux menaces et aux défis mondiaux.

La commission parlementaire regrette que, malgré les conclusions du sommet européen de décembre 2013, aucun progrès tangible important n'ait été réalisé pour équiper l'UE des ressources opérationnelles, industrielles et liées aux capacités nécessaires pour prévenir et gérer les crises internationales.

 

Les missions de la PSDC doivent faire partie d'une stratégie globale

Les missions civiles et militaires de l'UE doivent devenir de véritables outils efficaces et responsables de la stratégie d'action globale, au lieu de simplement donner de la visibilité à l'Union face à une crise, affirment les députés. Ils saluent néanmoins le professionnalisme et l'engagement du personnel des missions. L'Union européenne devrait pouvoir intervenir sur l'ensemble du spectre de gestion de crise et non se focaliser uniquement sur les instruments d'après-crise ou d'accompagnement de sortie de crise, ajoutent les députés.

 

Les parlementaires soulignent que les missions de l'UE doivent être financées de manière adéquate et que l'examen actuel du mécanisme Athéna pour financer leurs coûts communs doit faciliter le déploiement. Par ailleurs, les États membres doivent également faire preuve d'un engagement et d'une solidarité accrus pour fournir des forces, précise le texte.

 

Cyberdéfense: renforcer les capacités sans délai

La "menace imminente" de cyberattaques demande un renforcement immédiat des capacités de cyberdéfense de l'ensemble des États membres, expliquent les députés. Ils ajoutent que la cyberdéfense doit être intégrée de manière plus systématique dans les stratégies de sécurité nationale et qu'une stratégie européenne cohérente est nécessaire afin de protéger les infrastructures critiques contre les cyberattaques.

 

Vote en plénière en mai

La proposition de résolution, préparée par Arnaud Danjean (PPE, FR) et adoptée en commission par 45 voix pour, 18 voix contre et aucune abstention, devrait être débattue et votée lors de la session plénière de mai à Strasbourg.

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10 mars 2015 2 10 /03 /mars /2015 13:50
EU must adapt to new security challenges at once, say foreign affairs MEPs



10-03-2015 - europarl.europa.eu/ REF. : 20150309IPR32555
 

The EU and its member states must shoulder more responsibility for their security and defence at once, given the unprecedented levels of instability at EU borders, say Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs in a resolution voted on Monday. Member states must, as a matter of urgency, make more effective use of Common Security and Defence Policy tools, coordinate their internal and external security actions and pool resources more closely, says the text.

 

In their annual resolution on the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP), MEPs press it to adopt a common strategy to tackle new challenges to its security. Strategic reflection already under way within the European External Action Service and the Council on a new European Security Strategy to deal with new geostrategic scenarios, threats and global challenges must be given a clear and concrete boost at the June 2015 European Council, they say.

The committee regrets that despite the December 2013 EU summit conclusions, no substantial practical progress has been made in equipping the EU with much-needed operational, industrial and capabilities resources to prevent and manage international crises.

 

CSDP missions must form part of an overall strategy

EU civilian and military missions must become the genuine, effective and responsibly used tools of an overall action strategy, instead of merely raising the Union's crisis response profile, say MEPs, who nonetheless praise the professionalism and dedication of the missions' personnel.The EU should be able to intervene across the full spectrum of crisis management and not to focus exclusively on a post-crisis context or exit from crisis contexts, they add.MEPs stress that EU missions must be properly funded and that the current review of the Athena mechanism for funding their common costs must facilitate the deployment. Member states must also show more commitment and solidarity in supplying forces for these missions, they say.

 

Cyber defence: level up capabilities without delay

The "imminent threat" of cyber-attacks calls for an immediate “levelling-up” of the cyber defence capabilities of all member states, MEPs say. Cyber defence must be more systematically integrated within national security strategies and a coherent EU strategy is needed to protect critical infrastructure against cyber-attacks, the text also says.

 

Plenary vote in May

The draft resolution, prepared by Arnaud Danjean (EPP, FR) and passed in committee by 45 votes to 18, with 0 abstentions, is to be debated and put to a vote at the May plenary session in Strasbourg.

   

 

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10 février 2015 2 10 /02 /février /2015 12:50
EU Council conclusions on counter-terrorism

 

9/2/2015 EU source: Council Ref: CL15-019EN

 

Summary: 9 February 2015, Brussels – European Union Foreign Affairs Council conclusions on counter-terrorism

 

1.  The Council strongly condemns the recent attacks, which have been carried out by terrorist groups and individuals in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Terrorism poses a direct threat to all countries and all people regardless of their ethnic background, religion or belief. In a globalised world, such threats can only be countered through international cooperation and determined national action. In this context, the Council reiterates the EU's strong support to relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council, in particular Resolutions 2170 and 2178, and calls on all countries to take the necessary measures to ensure their swift implementation with full respect for human rights and the Rule of Law.

2.  The Council calls for comprehensive action against terrorism in line with the 2005 EU Counter-Terrorism Strategy and in full compliance with international law, fundamental values and international human rights standards. While Member States have the primary responsibility for addressing terrorism, the EU as such can add value in many ways. The actions taken in the area of justice and home affairs need to be complemented by external engagement and outreach, especially to countries in the Middle East, North Africa, the Sahel and the Gulf. Close coordination between internal and external action on the one hand, and between relevant EU actors and EU Member States on the other hand, will enhance the impact of our common efforts. We need to put more emphasis on the prevention of terrorism, in particular countering radicalisation, on recruitment, equipment and financing of terrorism, and address underlying factors such as conflict, poverty, proliferation of arms and state fragility that provide opportunities for terrorist groups to flourish.

3.  Against this background, the Council decides to step up, as a matter of urgency, its external action on countering terrorism in particular in the Mediterranean, the Middle East, including Yemen, and North Africa, in particular also Libya, and the Sahel. Counter-terrorism (CT) will be mainstreamed fully into EU foreign policy. It calls for accelerated implementation of the EU Syria and Iraq and Counter-Terrorism/Foreign Fighters Strategy (adopted on 20 October 2014) with a particular focus on foreign terrorist fighters and the EU's Maghreb Communication. The Council welcomes the Joint Communication on EU regional strategy for Syria and Iraq as well as the Da'esh threat and looks forward to its implementation as soon as possible.

4.  More specifically, the Council welcomes the following initiatives to be implemented in the course of 2015, building on those actions that are already taking place in the field of Justice and Home Affairs and in Foreign and Security Policy.
 

Strengthening partnerships with key countries
- Mainstreaming counter-terrorism in the EU's political dialogue with third countries to promote international cooperation and implementation of relevant UN Security Council Resolutions.

- Conducting targeted and upgraded security and counter-terrorism dialogues with Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Morocco, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and the Gulf Cooperation Council. Cooperation with Turkey should also be enhanced in line with the GAC conclusions of December 2014.
- Strengthening political dialogue with the League of Arab States, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the African Union and other relevant regional coordination structures, such as the G5 Sahel.
- Developing counter-terrorism action plans starting with Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon, including on measures to dissuade and disrupt foreign terrorist fighters' travel as well as to manage their return. Attention will also be given to targeted CT/CVE cooperation with the Western Balkan countries as well as with other countries affected by foreign terrorist fighters phenomenon. Given the importance of the creation of networks of policy makers and security experts on both sides of the Mediterranean, a Ministerial segment will be added to the Euromed group on foreign terrorist fighters established by the EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator and the EEAS.
- Deploying security/counter-terrorism experts in a number of key EU Delegations to strengthen their capacity to contribute to European counter-terrorism efforts and to liaise more effectively with relevant local authorities, while further building-up of counter-terrorism capacity within the EEAS.

 

Supporting capacity building
- Launching further capacity-building projects and activities with interested MENA countries addressing law enforcement, criminal justice, security sector reform, including crisis infrastructure, crisis and emergency response, border control and aviation security, strategic communication, radicalisation, dealing with the foreign terrorist fighters threat, recruitment and financing of terrorism, paying due regard to international human rights standards, in close cooperation with Europol, Eurojust, Frontex and CEPOL.
- The EU will respond positively to Iraq's request of CT assistance. Projects will be launched shortly to assist countries in the MENA region to implement UNSCR 2178 on foreign terrorist fighters, to prevent radicalization in Jordan and the Maghreb. Further CT capacity building assistance to countries in the region will be provided in the coming months, in particular related to the threat of foreign terrorist fighters, including fighters returning to their countries of origin and security sector reform. The Radicalization Awareness Network will work with interested countries in the region on prevention of radicalization.
- The EU will work to develop frameworks for information exchange and ways for the EU agencies to engage more strategically with the countries in the region to strengthen law enforcement and judicial cooperation.

 

Countering radicalisation and violent extremism
- Supporting international initiatives on countering radicalisation and terrorism such as the first International Centre of Excellence for Countering Violent Extremism ("Hedayah") in Abu Dhabi, and the Global Community Engagement and Resilience Fund (GCERF) in Geneva, while the successful EU Radicalisation Awareness Network (RAN) offers expertise to engage with local communities as well as with third countries. The High Representative, the Commission and the EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator will participate in the upcoming Summit on Countering Violent Extremism and related side events in Washington DC on 18-20 February 2015.
- Improving strategic communication, developing an outreach strategy to the Arab World, including developing counter-narratives to terrorist propaganda, promoting fundamental rights, and taking into account the increasingly frequent misuse of the internet in radicalisation, engaging through social media and enhancing communication in Arabic. In this process, we can draw on the expertise of the Syria Strategic Communications Advisory Team.
- Facilitating interfaith dialogue, civil society dialogue, people-to-people contacts, academic and cultural exchanges. Exploring the possibility of creating a Round of Eminent Persons from Europe and the Muslim world, to encourage more intellectual exchanges and promote wider thematic dialogues on the roots and ramifications of terrorism and radicalisation on our societies. In this context, inviting relevant EU Institutions to explore further cooperation opportunities with actors such as the Anna Lindh Foundation for the Dialogue of Cultures in Alexandria, the UN Alliance of Civilisations in New York and the King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Interreligious and intercultural dialogue in Vienna.
- Addressing the underlying factors of radicalization by supporting initiatives across the region with regard to youth, education, vocational training, job opportunities, civil society, security sector reform, role of women. The EU will work with faith-based organizations, as appropriate.
- Inviting the EU Special Representative for Human Rights to continue his efforts to defend and advocate freedom of expression, freedom of religion or belief and other universal values in particular in the MENA region.

 

Promoting international cooperation
- Continue supporting cooperation with the UN on counter-terrorism capacity building initiatives in the MENA region. The EU will enhance further its engagement in the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum (GCTF), including by actively shaping GCTF inspired initiatives such as Hedayah in Abu Dhabi, the Global Community Engagement Resilience Fund (GCERF) and the International Institute for Justice and the Rule of Law in Malta.
- Enhancing cooperation with key partners and countries on countering financing of terrorism, in particular Da'esh financing. The EU hosted a workshop to counter Da'esh financing together with US, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Norway, Japan, and UN agencies in Brussels on 4-5 February 2015 with the aim to step up outreach and capacity building efforts in third countries. The EU will engage with countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council in a dialogue on countering financing of terrorism, in particular Da'esh financing, and will closely cooperate with partners, including in the anti-ISIL coalition.
- Reinforcing, within the existing parameters, the role of EU INTCEN as the hub for strategic intelligence assessment at EU level, including on counter-terrorism.
- Regarding the Passenger Name Record data (PNR), we fully endorse the Riga JHA Ministers Joint Statement, and are looking for sound solutions to the exchange of PNR with relevant third countries.
- Combating illicit accumulation and trafficking of Small Arms and Light Weapons and their ammunition in line with the 2005 EU Strategy, in particular in the Western Balkans and Libya, and promotion of the Arms Trade Treaty in our Southern Neighbourhood.

 

Addressing underlying factors and ongoing crises
- Given the role unresolved conflicts play in the context of radicalization and recruitment, the EU will mobilize even more to attempt finding solutions and re-think current policies and approaches. The EU will mitigate terrorist and stability threats through its comprehensive approach combining diplomatic, socio-economic, development, conflict prevention, peacebuilding and crisis management tools.
- Inviting the High Representative and the Commission to continue to ensure sufficient funds and coherent use of instruments to address the threat of terrorism and move effectively from early warning to early action. CT, including prevention of radicalization, will, where appropriate, be mainstreamed into programming of assistance, making full use of the OECD guidelines on terrorism prevention. The EU delegations in the region have been asked to work with their host governments to identify quickly opportunities for twinning and TAIEX projects in the CT context.

5.  These Conclusions will serve as an input of the Foreign Affairs Council for discussion at the informal meeting of EU Heads of State and Government on 12 February 2015. The Council agreed to review progress in implementation at its next meetings, also in view of upcoming European Council meetings.

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10 février 2015 2 10 /02 /février /2015 12:45
Conclusions du Conseil sur la République Centrafricaine

 

9/2/2015 EU source: Council Ref: CL15-024FR

 

Summary: le 9 février 2015, Bruxelles - Conclusions du Conseil des affaires étrangères sur la République Centrafricaine

 

  1. L'Union européenne (UE) reste fermement engagée en République Centrafricaine (RCA) pour soutenir un processus durable de sortie de crise. Les accords de Libreville en janvier 2013, de N'Djamena en avril 2013, et de Brazzaville en juillet 2014, endossés par le Conseil de sécurité des Nations Unies, restent le cadre de référence incontournable pour tous les acteurs nationaux, régionaux et internationaux. L'UE réaffirme son plein soutien au travail des autorités de transition, en se félicitant de leur coopération étroite avec l'ONU, l'UA et la CEEAC. Elle appelle à la poursuite du processus politique conduit sous l'impulsion du chef d'Etat de la transition, avec l'appui du Médiateur pour la crise centrafricaine, dans le respect du cadre fixé par le Conseil de sécurité, y compris du régime de sanctions individuelles. L'UE appelle à cet égard tous les acteurs en RCA et tous les pays de la région à coopérer avec le Comité des sanctions du Conseil de sécurité. L'UE félicite la CEEAC pour sa prise de position ferme lors de la concertation d'Addis Abeba du 31 janvier 2015 à l'égard de toute démarche parallèle pouvant compromettre les efforts en cours de la communauté internationale visant à rétablir la paix, la sécurité et la stabilité en RCA. Le forum de Bangui constituera une étape décisive de ces efforts. Dans cette perspective, l'UE salue la tenue depuis le 21 janvier de consultations populaires inclusives autour des valeurs de paix, de dialogue et de réconciliation. Les centrafricains doivent s'approprier pleinement le processus.

  2. L'UE salue les efforts des forces internationales, MINUSCA, Sangaris et EUFOR RCA, qui coopèrent sur le terrain pour protéger les civils et contribuer à la stabilisation du pays. En dépit des progrès, la situation reste fragile. A cet égard, l'UE condamne fermement les récents enlèvements à Bangui. Elle est particulièrement préoccupée par les entraves au bon déroulement des consultations sur le terrain dans le cadre du processus de réconciliation et de paix, en particulier dans le centre et le nord-est du pays. La violence des groupes armés constitue une menace pour la population centrafricaine, l'Etat et son intégrité territoriale.

  3. L'UE demeure favorable à la recherche d'une solution pour une cessation effective et durable des hostilités. Les groupes armés actifs en RCA sont appelés à participer à ce processus en respectant le cadre de la transition et les principes de lutte contre l'impunité pour les responsables de crimes graves au regard du droit international. L'UE appelle les autorités de la transition et tous les pays de la région à continuer de coopérer avec la Cour Pénale Internationale.

  4. Au moment où l'opération européenne EUFOR RCA aura achevé son mandat au 15 mars 2015 et transféré sa mission dans la capitale à la mission des Nations Unies pour la stabilisation en République centrafricaine (MINUSCA), une nouvelle mission militaire de conseil de l'UE (EUMAM RCA), établie le 19 janvier 2015, d'une durée d'une année, sera déployée à Bangui en appui des Centrafricains et en étroite coordination avec la MINUSCA dans le cadre de son mandat dans le domaine de la RSS. EUMAM RCA fournira au gouvernement centrafricain des conseils d'experts , y compris en matière de genre et droits de l'homme, dans la perspective de la réforme des Forces Armées Centrafricaines (FACA) en une force armée professionnelle, démocratiquement responsable et représentative des composantes de la nation. Le Conseil devra agréer le lancement de cette nouvelle mission PSDC, qui devrait atteindre sa capacité opérationnelle initiale le 1er mars 2015. A cette fin, l'UE souligne l'importance d'une finalisation rapide de la génération de force d'EUMAM RCA. L'UE salue la bonne coopération avec les autorités centrafricaines et les autres partenaires sur place, notamment l'ONU.

  5. La transition en RCA devra aboutir à des élections présidentielles et législatives bien organisées, libres, justes, crédibles. A cet égard, l'UE appelle les autorités concernées à apporter les précisions indispensables à la poursuite du processus électoral, en particulier les modalités de mise en œuvre des opérations électorales, afin de pouvoir mobiliser tous les acteurs dans le respect du calendrier électoral prévu. Sur cette base, l'UE confirme sa disponibilité à contribuer immédiatement aux élections en RCA dans le cadre du programme d'appui de l'ONU, et invite les autorités de transition, avec le soutien de l'ONU, à rechercher activement la mobilisation d'autres bailleurs.

  6. L'UE reste fortement préoccupée par la situation humanitaire en RCA. Elle s'inquiète en particulier du sort des populations déplacées et isolées à l'intérieur du pays ainsi que des populations réfugiées dans les pays voisins. L'UE condamne les exactions graves et répétées des groupes armés contre les populations civiles et les travailleurs humanitaires. Les besoins restent immenses, et la mobilisation des bailleurs doit se poursuivre et s'intensifier.

  7. Consciente des graves difficultés que traverse la RCA en matière de ressources, l'UE travaille conjointement avec le FMI et les autorités centrafricaines au rétablissement progressif des équilibres budgétaires nécessaires à la RCA, en vue de leur importance pour le bon fonctionnement des services essentiels de l'Etat.

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10 février 2015 2 10 /02 /février /2015 12:45
EU Council conclusions on the Boko Haram threat

 

9/2/2015 EU source: Council Ref: CL15-020EN

 

Summary: 9 February 2015, Brussels – European Union Foreign Affairs Council conclusions on the Boko Haram threat

 

  1. The Boko Haram terrorist actions in north-eastern Nigeria are becoming a growing threat not only for the peace and security of Nigeria but to the whole region including Cameroon, Chad and Niger. The Council stresses the importance of an urgent, comprehensive response to the insurgency, to prevent further terrorist and criminal acts perpetrated by Boko Haram, including stronger governance and economic development.

  2. Recalling the European Union's (EU) Statement of 19 January 2015 and its Conclusions of 12 May 2014, the Council condemns the continuing violence and appalling atrocities committed by Boko Haram on civilians, including women and children. It expresses its sincere condolences to the people and governments of countries affected. The perpetrators of these gross violations of international humanitarian law, human rights and dignity must be held to account. The international community cannot rest while such outrages are being committed and stands united against such acts of cruelty.

  3. The Council is particularly concerned about the humanitarian consequences of the attacks and their impact on Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger and recalls the primary responsibility of States to protect civilians on their territory in accordance with the obligations under international law. Thousands have been killed. Over one and a half million people have been displaced within Nigeria and hundreds of thousands to neighbouring countries. Families have been separated, girls abducted, children orphaned and women and girls sexually abused. The EU pledges to continue providing immediate relief to those in need and to increase its efforts at regional level. It commends the work of humanitarian agencies in delivering such relief and encourages them to scale-up their presence. At the same time, the Council underlines the need of the Nigerian government to increase the response to the urgent humanitarian crisis caused by the Boko Haram insurgency and recalls the EU's readiness to assist. International humanitarian efforts should be appropriately coordinated by the United Nations (UN) in order to enhance delivery capacity and prevent the refugee crisis from escalating out of control.

  4. The scale of the Boko Haram extremist threat requires a Nigerian, as well as a collective and comprehensive response to defeat terrorism in full respect of human rights. The European Union notes that the responsibility to address the immediate security challenges lies primarily with the countries most affected, and calls upon them to urgently intensify their cooperation and coordination. In this respect, it commends the Chadian army's recent assistance to the Cameroonian forces already engaged in the fight against Boko Haram. The Council welcomes and supports the decision of the States in the region, endorsed by the African Union (AU), to deploy a multinational force, to be endorsed by the UN Security Council, once the concept of operations is finalised. In this regard it salutes the AU preparatory meeting that was held in Yaoundé from 5 to 7 February. It also welcomes actions already undertaken under the aegis of the Lake Chad Basin Commission, following high-level security conferences held in Paris, London, Abuja and Niamey since May 2014.

  5. The EU stands ready with its partners - the UN, the AU, regional organisations, the individual States concerned as well as the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum (GCTF) - to provide support to the region with its full range of instruments, including the possibility of recourse to the African Peace Facility and EU crisis management tools. The EU will also look at ways to help the countries concerned strengthen their own capacities to handle the challenge, including the root causes of the radicalisation and violence, whilst encouraging intergovernmental cooperation amongst them. The Council emphasises that the crisis can only be overcome when all forces concerned abide by international humanitarian law, human rights and refugee law and practices in support of the communities they are tasked to protect.

  6. At the same time, the Council reaffirms its determination to assist Nigeria at the national and local level as well as other countries affected in their efforts to promote the sustainable economic development of the Lake Chad region, fight corruption, provide the social and educational needs of its population and meet up with the aspirations of their young people.

  7. The Council invites the HR and the Commission to take forward appropriate actions and propose necessary decisions, notably on the basis of a Political Framework for Crisis Approach (PFCA), including an assessment of the needs of the countries affected by the menace of Boko Haram. The PFCA should include a gender perspective. The Council will remain closely involved in this issue and will revert when necessary.

 

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21 janvier 2015 3 21 /01 /janvier /2015 17:50
First ever UK-Japan Foreign and Defence ministers meeting

 

21 January 2015 The Rt Hon Michael Fallon MP and The Rt Hon Philip Hammond MP - Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Ministry of Defence

 

Foreign Secretary and Defence Secretary meet Japanese counterparts in London

 

Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and Defence Secretary Michael Fallon have met the Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and Defence Minister Gen Nakatani, in the first ever Foreign and Defence Ministerial Meeting between the UK and Japan.

During the meeting, the ministers discussed the global security situation, including the challenge posed by ISIL and international terrorism, and what more the UK and Japan can do together in the areas of defence and security to promote international peace and security.

Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said:

“The UK and Japan have long shared a very strong relationship. We work together in the G7 and G20 on issues that affect the whole world, including security, energy, cyber crime and healthcare, and we share a common belief in freedom of speech and freedom of expression.

“This week’s appalling threat by ISIL against two Japanese hostages demonstrates just how much these beliefs are at risk, and how important it is we work together to defeat those who would destroy our way of life.

“Today’s discussions have come at an important moment and demonstrate the unity between Japan and the UK, as strategic partners and as friends. We will continue to work together on the dangers we face and the interests we share.”

Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said:

“I’m delighted to welcome His Excellency Gen Nakatani here today. This is the first ever meeting of this kind between the UK and Japan. That is not just hugely symbolic, it also clearly reaffirms our resolve to deepen and broaden our defence relationship.

“It will be vital to build on the progress we’ve made today. We therefore welcome the plan for greater cooperation and the important role which Japan is increasingly playing on the international stage.”

Today’s meeting took place at Lancaster House in London and was first announced by the Prime Minister during Japanese Prime Minister Abe’s visit last year. The Defence and Foreign Ministers also met separately this morning for detailed discussions around their individual briefs, including the wider relationship between Japan and the UK and bilateral trade and investment

 

Further information

  • The joint Japanese-British statement issued after the meetings can be found here: UK-Japan 2+2 Statement (ODT, 8.34KB) ; UK-Japan 2+2 Statement - Annex (ODT, 15.6KB)
  • The Prime Minister agreed with Japanese Prime Minister Abe during Mr Abe’s visit to the UK in May 2014 to hold a Foreign and Defence Ministerial Meeting between the UK and Japan.

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23 novembre 2014 7 23 /11 /novembre /2014 12:50
HR/VP to VP/HR? the next generation

 

With the formal entry into office of the new European Commission chaired by Jean-Claude Juncker, a new organisation of the college and its services, as well as a new modus operandi across all EU services will be put to test. This applies to the Commission as a whole – to the extent that it will probably shape its entire mandate and future legacy.

But it will be particularly relevant for the area of foreign policy and external action, in view of the foreseeable implications – and possibly the unintended consequences – of the new setup for the role of the multi-hatted high representative for foreign affairs and security policy and vice-president (HR/VP). Five years after Catherine Ashton took up the newly created function of HR/VP, Federica Mogherini is taking over in a significantly different institutional landscape.

 

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15 avril 2014 2 15 /04 /avril /2014 15:50
3309th Council meeting Foreign Affairs Luxembourg, 14 and 15 April 2014

 

14 and 15 April 2014 8763/14 (OR. en) Provisional Version - Presse 219 / PR CO 21

 

President Catherine Ashton High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

 

Main results of the Council Meeting of Foreign Ministers

 

Ukraine

The Council condemned actions undertaken by armed individuals in cities of Eastern Ukraine. These attempts at destabilising Ukraine must come to an end. The Council also decided to expand the list of those subject to asset freeze and visa ban.

 

The Council reiterated its strong support for Ukraine's unity, sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity, and called upon Russia to do likewise. It demanded Russia to call back its troops from the Ukrainian border and immediately withdraw the mandate of the Federation Council to use force on Ukrainian soil.

 

Catherine Ashton, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, said:

"Any further action aimed at destabilising Ukraine must stop. It is crucial that Russia and Ukraine engage in a meaningful dialogue to find a political solution. I will meet the Foreign Ministers of the United States, Russia and Ukraine this Thursday in Geneva. The purpose of this meeting is to start a dialogue on how to deescalate the situation in Ukraine and to ensure that peace and stability returns to the whole of Ukraine."

 

The Council also signalled that the EU is ready to assist Ukraine in the field of civilian security sector reform. All options will be examined, including a possible mission under the Common Security and Defence Policy, and a decision will be taken at the next Foreign Affairs Council.

 

In addition, the Council approved macro-financial assistance to Ukraine to support the country's economic stabilisation and reforms. € 1 billion can be made available to contribute to covering Ukraine's urgent balance-of-payments needs as identified in the government's economic programme supported by the IMF. This brings the total amount to € 1.6 billion.

 

The Council also adopted temporary tariff cuts on Ukrainian goods, ahead of the application of the Association Agreement. The reduction of customs duties is expected to enter into force on 23 April.

 

The Council moreover strengthened EU sanctions against persons responsible for misappropriating Ukrainian state funds. It targeted four additional persons in Ukraine with an asset freeze.

 

Meeting of Defence Ministers

 

Mali

The Council established a civilian mission under the Common Security and Defence Policy to support the internal security forces in Mali. It will support the Malian state to ensure democratic order and the conditions for lasting peace through strategic advice and training for the three internal security forces in Mali, i.e. the police, Gendarmerie and Garde nationale.

 

The EU High Representative said:

"EUCAP Sahel Mali is a further demonstration of the EU's commitment to supporting reform in Mali. By assisting the Malian internal security forces with EU expertise, EUCAP will help build a lasting solution to Mali's security challenges."

 

The Council also extended the complementary EU training mission in Mali (EUTM Mali) by two years, i.e. until 18 May 2016. The mission supports the training and reorganisation of the Malian Armed Forces so as to help improve the military capacity of the Malian Armed Forces. The extension of the mandate will allow military training of four additional battalions as well as the implementation of additional tasks.

 

Ukraine

Over lunch, EU defence ministers discussed the effects of the Ukrainian crisis on the common security and defence policy, in the presence of 8ATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

 

 

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14 avril 2014 1 14 /04 /avril /2014 11:50
Foreign Affairs (Defence) Council meeting Luxembourg, 14 and 15 April 2014

 14.04.2014 COUNCIL OFTHE EUROPEAN UNION- Press Office

 

INDICATIVE PROGRAMME

All times are approximate and subject to change

Public items and events can be viewed live here

 

MONDAY, 14 APRIL

+/- 12.00 Doorstep by High Representative Catherine Ashton

+/- 12.30 Beginning of Foreign Affairs Council meeting

Adoption of the agenda (8765/14)

+/- 12.40 Adoption of legislative A Items (8768/14) (in public session)

Adoption of non-legislative A Items (8769/14)

 

Lunch: - Bosnia and Herzegovina - Syria

After lunch: Ukraine

 

+/- 18.00 Press conference(Foreign Affairs Council)

+/- 18.00 Signing ceremony EU -Tunisia

+/- 18.15 EU-Tunisia Association Council

+/- 19.30 Press conference (EU-Tunisia Association Council)

 

TUESDAY, 15 APRIL

+/- 9.30 European Defence Agency Steering Board meeting

+/- 10.30 Foreign Affairs Council - Meeting of Defence Ministers

Communication on Maritime Security

Central African Republic (EUFOR RCA)

Ukraine

+/- 11.25 Doorstep by A. F. Rasmussen, NATO Secretary General

+/- 14.00 Press conference (Foreign Affairs Council - Defence and EDA Steering Board)

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7 avril 2014 1 07 /04 /avril /2014 22:40
Lavrov et Kerry évoquent un soutien international à l'Ukraine (Moscou)

 

MOSCOU, 7 avril - RIA Novosti

 

Les chefs de diplomatie russe et américain, Sergueï Lavrov et John Kerry, ont évoqué lundi par téléphone un possible soutien international à l'Ukraine, indique un communiqué du ministère russe des Affaires étrangères. 

 

Les interlocuteurs "ont examiné la possibilité d'un soutien extérieur dont l'Ukraine pourrait avoir besoin pour régler sa crise politique intérieure. Sergueï Lavrov a souligné à cette occasion la nécessité impérieuse […] d'engager une réforme constitutionnelle profonde et transparente avec la participation de toutes les forces politiques et de toutes les régions", lit-on en substance dans le communiqué.

 

Cette réforme est particulièrement d'actualité vu les actions de protestation qui se déroulent dans le sud-est de l'Ukraine.

 

M. Lavrov a également souligné "l'importance de mettre en place un dialogue réel sur la fédéralisation de l'Ukraine et de consacrer son statut d'Etat neutre".

 

"Les chefs de diplomatie russe et américain ont convenu de poursuivre leurs efforts conjoints visant à définir les formes de soutien international les plus adéquates", souligne le communiqué.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:50
NATO Takes Measures to Reinforce Collective Defense

 

April 3rd, 2014 By NATO - defencetalk.com

 

NATO foreign ministers on Tuesday (1 April 2014) reaffirmed their commitment to enhance the Alliance’s collective defence, agreed to further support Ukraine and to suspend NATO’s practical cooperation with Russia. “NATO’s greatest responsibility is to protect and defend our territory and our people. And make no mistake, this is what we will do,” NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said.

 

Ministers directed Allied military authorities to develop additional measures to strengthen collective defence and deterrence against any threat of aggression against the Alliance, Mr. Fogh Rasmussen said. “We will make sure we have updated military plans, enhanced exercises and appropriate deployments,” he said. NATO has already reinforced its presence on the eastern border of the Alliance, including surveillance patrols over Poland and Romania and increased numbers of fighter aircraft allocated to the NATO air policing mission in the Baltic States.

 

On Ukraine, NATO foreign ministers decided to intensify efforts to support the country’s defence reforms. The Alliance will also provide advice on Ukraine’s protection of critical infrastructure. In a separate meeting with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Andrii Deshchytsia, the Allies and Ukraine condemned Russia’s illegal military intervention in Ukraine and Russia’s violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

 

NATO Foreign Ministers also agreed to suspend all of NATO’s practical cooperation with Russia. “Through its actions, Russia has chosen to undermine the very foundations upon which our cooperation is built,” said the Secretary General. “In light of this, there can be no business as usual.”

 

Allied ministers urged Russia to engage in dialogue towards a political and diplomatic solution that respects international law and Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders.

 

In light of the Ukraine crisis, preparations for the Alliance’s summit in Wales this September are even more important, Mr. Fogh Rasmussen said. “We remain committed to all our core missions. We will further develop our partnerships through defence capacity building and by building upon our experience in operations in order to further promote security and stability together and we will continue to invest in our readiness, so that we stay strong and prepared for any challenge.”

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3 avril 2014 4 03 /04 /avril /2014 07:35
Russie-Otan: poursuivre la coopération sur les projets afghans (Kaboul)

 

 

BRUXELLES, 2 avril - RIA Novosti



Kaboul appelle l'Otan et la Russie à régler leurs divergences sans toucher aux projets qu'elles réalisent conjointement en Afghanistan, a déclaré mercredi le vice-ministre afghan des Affaires étrangères Ershad Ahmadi.
 
"Nous demandons à la Russie, à l'Otan et aux Etats-Unis de séparer leurs problèmes bilatéraux de la coopération sur l'Afghanistan. Nous poursuivrons bien entendu un partenariat constructif et fructueux avec la Fédération de Russie sur une base bilatérale", a indiqué M. Ahmadi. Le vice-ministre répondait à la question de savoir s'il regrettait la décision de l'Alliance de suspendre la coopération avec la Russie en matière d'entretien des hélicoptères afghans et de formation portant sur la lutte antidrogue.
 
Les ministres des Affaires étrangères des pays alliés avaient antérieurement déclaré qu'ils suspendaient la coopération civile et militaire pratique entre l'Otan et la Russie, mais maintenaient le dialogue politique au sein du Conseil Russie-Otan au niveau des ambassadeurs et à un niveau plus élevé.
 
Les ministres ont convenu de revenir à l'examen des relations avec la Russie lors de leur prochaine rencontre en juin. 
 
Un haut responsable de l'Otan qui a requis l'anonymat a annoncé mercredi aux journalistes que l'Alliance avait gelé la coopération avec Moscou en matière d'entretien des hélicoptères afghans et de formation relative à la lutte contre la drogue. L'Otan envisage de trouver un acteur capable de remplacer la Russie dans ces projets.

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2 avril 2014 3 02 /04 /avril /2014 16:50
NATO Reinforces Collective Defense

April 2, 2014 defense-aerospace.com/

(Source: North Atlantic Treaty Organization; issued April 1, 2014)

 

NATO Takes Measures to Reinforce Collective Defence, Agrees On Support for Ukraine

 

NATO foreign ministers on Tuesday (1 April 2014) reaffirmed their commitment to enhance the Alliance’s collective defence, agreed to further support Ukraine and to suspend NATO’s practical cooperation with Russia. “NATO’s greatest responsibility is to protect and defend our territory and our people. And make no mistake, this is what we will do,” NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said.

 

Ministers directed Allied military authorities to develop additional measures to strengthen collective defence and deterrence against any threat of aggression against the Alliance, Mr. Fogh Rasmussen said. “We will make sure we have updated military plans, enhanced exercises and appropriate deployments,” he said. NATO has already reinforced its presence on the eastern border of the Alliance, including surveillance patrols over Poland and Romania and increased numbers of fighter aircraft allocated to the NATO air policing mission in the Baltic States.

 

On Ukraine, NATO foreign ministers decided to intensify efforts to support the country’s defence reforms. The Alliance will also provide advice on Ukraine’s protection of critical infrastructure. In a separate meeting with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Andrii Deshchytsia, the Allies and Ukraine condemned Russia’s illegal military intervention in Ukraine and Russia’s violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

 

NATO Foreign Ministers also agreed to suspend all of NATO’s practical cooperation with Russia. “Through its actions, Russia has chosen to undermine the very foundations upon which our cooperation is built,” said the Secretary General. “In light of this, there can be no business as usual.”

 

Allied ministers urged Russia to engage in dialogue towards a political and diplomatic solution that respects international law and Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders.

 

In light of the Ukraine crisis, preparations for the Alliance’s summit in Wales this September are even more important, Mr. Fogh Rasmussen said. “We remain committed to all our core missions. We will further develop our partnerships through defence capacity building and by building upon our experience in operations in order to further promote security and stability together and we will continue to invest in our readiness, so that we stay strong and prepared for any challenge.”

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30 mars 2014 7 30 /03 /mars /2014 19:40
photo State Department

photo State Department

 

30.03.20 Romandie.com (ats)

 

Le secrétaire d'Etat américain John Kerry et son homologue russe Sergueï Lavrov ont entamé dimanche à Paris des discussions, ont constaté des journalistes sur place. Ils doivent tenter de trouver un compromis sur la crise ukrainienne.

 

Ces négociations d'urgence ont été organisées en quelques heures après un entretien téléphonique vendredi soir entre Barack Obama et Vladimir Poutine. Ce contact était le premier entre les deux chefs d'Etat depuis l'annonce par Washington de sanctions économiques visant l'entourage proche du président russe, jugées dimanche "pas trop douloureuses" par M. Lavrov.

 

Lavrov et Kerry ont convenu de la nécessité de pourparlers rapides pour mettre fin à l'escalade qui a replongé la planète dans une quasi Guerre froide et menace de gagner en intensité. Ce alors que selon Washington et Kiev, Moscou a massé des troupes le long de la frontière avec les régions orientales de l'Ukraine, russophones et théâtre de manifestations séparatistes, en vue d'une possible invasion.

 

Compromis fédéraliste

 

Le fossé à combler semble gigantesque entre les deux grandes puissances. Dimanche, le ministre russe des Affaires étrangères a de nouveau émis l'idée d'un compromis sur la base d'une "fédéralisation" donnant une plus grande autonomie aux régions de l'est et du sud de l'ex-république soviétique.

 

Selon Moscou, les russophones voient leurs droits bafoués par les autorités pro-européennes au pouvoir depuis la destitution fin février de Viktor Ianoukovitch. Il a appelé à un dialogue national et il a dénoncé l'attitude de Kiev qui rejette cette idée.

 

Médiation suisse précieuse

 

Dans ce contexte, la Suisse peut se profiler comme médiatrice dans les crises internationales comme en Crimée et en Ukraine, assure l'ancien haut diplomate suisse Michael Ambühl dans une interview parue dans la "Schweiz am Sonntag".

 

Les bons offices en la matière constituent un "marché compétitif", déclare M. Ambühl. "La Confédération présente certains avantages par rapport à ses concurrents: elle est neutre, n'est membre ni de l'Union européenne (UE) ni de l'OTAN, n'a pas de passé colonial, et pas de programme caché", a-t-il souligné.

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25 mars 2014 2 25 /03 /mars /2014 08:40
Russie-Ukraine: entretiens des ministres des AE à La Haye

 

LA HAYE, 24 mars - RIA Novosti

 

Une rencontre du chef de la diplomatie russe Sergueï Lavrov avec le ministre ukrainien des Affaires étrangères par intérim, Andreï Dechtchitsa, a commencé lundi soir à La Haye, aux Pays-Bas, a appris RIA Novosti d'une source au sein de la délégation russe.

Il s'agit des premiers entretiens entre Moscou et les représentants des nouvelles autorités de Kiev après le changement du pouvoir du 22 février.

Un changement de pouvoir ayant toutes les caractéristiques d'un coup d'Etat s'est produit en Ukraine le 22 février dernier. La Rada suprême (parlement) a destitué le président Viktor Ianoukovitch, réformé la constitution et fixé l'élection présidentielle au 25 mai. Viktor Ianoukovitch a déclaré qu'il avait quitté le pays sous la menace de persécutions, mais qu'il restait le président légitime de l'Ukraine. Moscou conteste la légitimité des nouvelles autorités du pays.

Peuplée en majorité de russophones, la république autonome ukrainienne de Crimée a refusé de reconnaître les nouvelles autorités de Kiev et proclamé son indépendance et la réunification avec la Russie au terme d'un référendum du 16 mars. La Russie et la Crimée ont signé le traité sur le rattachement de la république de Crimée et de la ville de Sébastopol à la Fédération de Russie le 18 mars. Kiev a protesté, en le qualifiant d'"annexion" de la Crimée par la Russie, soit de rattachement forcé de la péninsule.

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16 mars 2014 7 16 /03 /mars /2014 12:50
EU Foreign Affairs Council: Background on Ukraine, Syria, and EU-Africa Summit

14/3/2014 EU source: Council Ref: CL14-041EN

 

Summary: 14 March 2014, Brussels - Background on the European Union Foreign Affairs Council on Monday, 17 March 2014 in Brussels.
 

The Council, starting at 9.30, will be chaired by Catherine Ashton, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

The Council will kick-off with a debate on the situation in Ukraine and the EU's Eastern Partnership more generally. An exchange of views on Bosnia and Herzegovina will follow.

Ministers will then discuss how best to support on-going efforts in the Middle East peace process. The Council will then address developments related to the crisis in Syria and its regional context. After that, it will turn to the EU-Africa summit, to be held on 2/3 April in Brussels.

Over lunch, ministers will hold a discussion on energy diplomacy, in the presence of Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger.

The High Representative is also expected to shortly de-brief ministers on her recent visit to Iran, at the start of the meeting.

The EU-Uzbekistan Co-operation Council will start at 16.30, chaired by the Greek Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Evangelos Venizelos (TV/photo opportunity at 17.30).

Press conferences:

• after the Foreign Affairs Council (+/- 15.00)

• following the EU-Uzbekistan Co-operation Council (+/- 18.55)

* * *

Press conferences and public events by video streaming: http://video.consilium.europa.eu/

Video coverage in broadcast quality (MPEG4): http://tvnewsroom.consilium.europa.eu

Photographic library on www.consilium.europa.eu/photo for photos in high resolution.

* * *

Ukraine and Eastern Partnership

The Council will take stock of developments in the Ukraine and follow-up on the extraordinary meeting of EU Heads of State and Government on 6 March and on the extraordinary FAC of 3 March. Ministers will discuss an EU response to the developments, ahead of a meeting of the European Council on 20/21 March. Wider issues related to the EU's Eastern Partnership may also be raised during the debate.

At their extraordinary meeting on 6 March, EU Heads of State or Government strongly condemned the violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity by the Russian Federation and called for an immediate withdrawal of armed forces to their areas of permanent stationing. They also considered the decision to hold a referendum on the future status of the Crimea contrary to the Ukrainian constitution and therefore illegal.

For the EU, the solution to the crisis in Ukraine must be based on the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine. Such a solution should be found through negotiations between Ukraine and the Russia federation, for instance through a so-called "contact group".

At the same time, leaders decided to take action. They suspended bilateral talks with the Russian Federation on visa matters as well as talks on a new EU-Russia agreement. European G8 members and the EU have also suspended their participation in the preparations for the G8 summit in June in Sotchi.

Moreover, in the absence of talks between the governments of Ukraine and Russia and if they do not produce results in a limited timeframe, the EU will decide on additional measures, leaders stated. Preparatory work on such measures has been on-going.

Leaders also agreed that further steps by Russia to destabilise the situation in Ukraine would lead to additional and far reaching consequences for relations between the EU (and its member states) and the Russian Federation in a broad range of economic areas.

Heads of State and Government welcomed a package of support measures presented by the Commission last week, including overall support of at least € 11 billion over the coming years from the EU budget and EU-based international financial institutions. It also comprises the granting of autonomous trade preferences to Ukraine so as to advance the application of certain provisions of the Association Agreement on a deep and comprehensive free trade area.

Leaders in addition decided to sign very shortly the political chapters of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement while reiterating their commitment to sign the full agreement including the deep and comprehensive free trade area. See statement by the Heads of State or Government and factsheet on EU-Ukraine relations.

The Association Agreements with Moldova and Georgia were initialled at the Vilnius Eastern Partnership summit in November 2013. Their signature is to take place as soon as possible and before the end of August 2014. See European Council conclusions of December 2013 (para 47).

The EU's Eastern Partnership was launched at the Prague summit in May 2009. It concerns six Eastern partner countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine. Its objectives include accelerating political association and deepening economic integration with the Eastern European partner countries. The EU supports reforms in the partner countries aimed at consolidating democracy, the rule of law, respect for human rights and an open market economy. At the same time, it offers gradual integration into the European economy, greater mobility for citizens and closer political ties. Between 2010 and 2013, EUR 1.9 billion were allocated to support its implementation.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

The Council will discuss the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The High Representative will brief ministers about her recent trip to Sarajevo where she discussed the situation with politicians and members of civil society. See her statement at the conclusion of the trip.

In October 2013, the Council expressed its serious concern at the on-going failure of the Bosnia and Herzegovina political leaders to implement the ruling of the European Court of Human Rights in the Sejdić/Finci case and stressed that the current lack of a solution is preventing Bosnia and Herzegovina from further progress towards the EU. It also reiterated its unequivocal support for Bosnia and Herzegovina's EU perspective as a sovereign and united country  enjoying full territorial integrity. See Council conclusions.

Middle East peace process

The Council will discuss the Middle East peace process. The High Representative will brief ministers on what the EU can do to support the talks.

The EU fully supports the on-going efforts of the parties and of the US. In December 2013, the Council reiterated the EU's readiness to contribute substantially to post-conflict arrangements for ensuring the sustainability of a peace agreement. "The EU will provide an unprecedented package of European political, economic and security support to both parties in the context of a final status agreement," the Council said in conclusions. The on-going work to define the  details of the EU's offer will be the subject of the debate by ministers. See Council conclusions of 16 December 2013.

Syrian conflict and regional context

The Council will consider the latest developments in the Syrian conflict, in particular the humanitarian situation following the adoption of a UN Security Council resolution on the humanitarian situation on 22 February, the growing terrorist threat and the state of play in diplomatic efforts to bring an end to the crisis.

For the EU, the only solution to the conflict is a genuine political transition, based on the full implementation of the Geneva Communiqué of 30 June 2012, and preserving the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of Syria.

The EU and its member states have been quick to support the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons. The EU is the largest financial contributor to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and supports its work towards the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons stockpile, including through the provision of armoured vehicles and satellite imagery.

Individual member states have also provided resources to assist the destruction programme. The EU and its member states are the largest humanitarian donor for the Syrian crisis. The total response from EU and member states to the crisis stands now at € 2.6 billion.

For more details on EU positions and restrictive measures, see factsheet European Union and Syria.

EU-Africa summit

The Council will be briefed about preparations for the 4th EU-Africa summit, which is to take place in Brussels on the 2-3 April under the theme "Investing in people, prosperity and peace". The European Council of 20/21 March will also discuss the summit preparations.

The EU-Africa summit will bring together the Heads of State and Government of the European Union and the African continent, together with the EU and African Union institutions. It will illustrate how EU-Africa relations have evolved over the past years, based on the Joint Africa-EU Strategy of 2007, which established a partnership of equals going beyond development to tackle challenges of common interest, including political, economic, investment and trade issues.

Leaders will discuss ways to deepen co-operation under the three areas identified in the summit theme, i.e. people, prosperity and peace. They will also address investment, climate change, prosperity, and ways for stimulating growth and create jobs, and will take stock of ongoing and future cooperation in the various fields covered by the Joint Africa-EU Strategy. The issue of migration as well as peace and security cooperation will also be on the agenda.

For more information, see the website of the EU-Africa summit.

Energy diplomacy

Over lunch, ministers will exchange views on EU energy diplomacy, in the presence of Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger. Ministers are set to discuss the foreign policy implications of strategic choices made in the field of energy by relevant partners.

The shift in the global energy landscape creates new challenges and opportunities for EU foreign and security policy. The shale gas revolution in the US, the growing demand for energy in India due to its increasing population and the rise of gas as a source in China might have far-reaching political and economic consequences.

The debate follows previous exchanges among EU leaders and ministers about the external dimension of EU energy policy. The European Council of February 2011 asked the High Representative to take full account of the energy security dimension in her work and to reflect energy security in the EU's neighbourhood policy.

Other items

The Council is set to adopt several other items without discussion, including:

- European aid volunteers initiative

The Council is set to establish a European voluntary humanitarian aid corps which sets out a framework for joint contributions from European volunteers to support and complement humanitarian aid operations worldwide, as provided for in the Lisbon Treaty. See also legal text.

- Gulf of Guinea

The Council is due to adopt an EU strategy on the Gulf of Guinea, to support the efforts of the region and its coastal states to address the many challenges of maritime insecurity and organised crime. EU action will focus on four objectives: building a common understanding of the scale of the threat in the Gulf of Guinea and the need to address it; helping regional governments put in place institutions and capabilities to ensure security and the rule of law; supporting the development of prosperous economies in the coastal countries; strengthening cooperation structures between the countries of the region to ensure effective action across borders at sea and on land. The Council is to invite the EEAS and the Commission to put forward the actions necessary to deliver the strategy and report back annually on progress made.

- EU strategy for security and development in the Sahel

The Council is to adopt conclusions on the implementation of the EU strategy for security and development in the Sahel. The Council is set to welcome the progress made in implementing the strategy that it adopted in March 2011 and reaffirm the EU's objectives in the fields of security, development, peace-building, conflict prevention and countering violent extremism. It will invite the Commission and the EEAS to extend the implementation of the strategy to Burkina Faso and Chad while intensifying activities in Mali, Mauretania and Niger.

- EUCAP Mali

The Council is likely to adopt a crisis management concept for a civilian mission under the Common Security and Defence Policy to assist the internal security forces in Mali (EUCAP Mali) so as to enable the Malian state to ensure law and order as well as fight against terrorists, organised crime and cross-border trafficking. Once established, EUCAP Mali would deliver strategic advice and training for managers of the three internal security forces in Mali, i.e. the police, Gendarmerie and Garde nationale. A separate legal act - currently under preparation - is required for the mission to be formally set up.

- West Africa EPA development programme

The Council is set to adopt conclusions on West Africa's Economic Partnership Agreement development programme (PAPED). In the period from 2015 to 2020, the EU is committed to provide at least € 6.5 billion for activities linked to the PAPED. This is to be delivered through the European Development Fund, relevant instruments of the EU budget, contributions from member states and the European Investment Bank. See draft Council conclusions.

- South Sudan

The Council is to adopt conclusions on South Sudan, expressing its deep concern about the ongoing crisis in South Sudan, the grave human suffering it causes and its regional implications. It will call on all parties to immediately stop the violence and honour the Cessation of Hostilities agreement signed on 23 January. The EU firmly supports the mediation led by the Inter- Governmental Authority for Development.

- Central African Republic

The Council is due to adopt conclusions on the Central African Republic, encouraging the current authorities to continue the political transition. The EU is the main humanitarian and development partner of the Central African Republic. For more information, see fact sheet.

______________________

* This note has been drawn up under the responsibility of the press office

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12 mars 2014 3 12 /03 /mars /2014 17:45
photo Nasa

photo Nasa

 

12-03-2014 SEDE

 

The Subcommittee jointly with the Committee on Foreign Affairs will debate the situation in the Horn of Africa with Alexander Rondos, EU Special Representative for the Horn of Africa, before visiting the EU Missions in Djibouti the week after.

 

When : 19 March 2014


Further information meeting documents

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4 mars 2014 2 04 /03 /mars /2014 20:40
Ukraine: toutes les options restent sur la table pour sanctionner la Russie

 

04 mars 2014 Romandie.com (AFP)

 

LONDRES - Londres a affirmé mardi que toutes les options restaient ouvertes pour répondre à l'intervention russe en Ukraine après la publication d'un extrait d'un document officiel laissant entendre que la diplomatie britannique ne soutiendrait pas des sanctions commerciales.

 

Le ministre des Affaires étrangères William Hague a déclaré mardi devant la chambre des Communes que toutes les options restaient sur la table aussi bien diplomatiques qu'économiques pour trouver une issue à la crise ukrainienne.

 

Cependant, le Royaume-Uni ne fera pas d'annonce avant la réunion jeudi des responsables européens, a-t-il ajouté.

 

Le chef de la diplomatie britannique a jugé absolument regrettable qu'un document tenu par un conseiller de David Cameron ait pu être photographié au téléobjectif. Cela n'aurait pas dû se produire, a-t-il dit devant la chambre basse du Parlement.

 

Cependant, il a précisé que ce qui est écrit dans un document entre les mains d'un responsable officiel ne constitue pas nécessairement un exposé des décisions que prendra le gouvernement de Sa Majesté.

 

Le Royaume-Uni ne devrait pas soutenir, pour l'instant, des sanctions commerciales (...) ou fermer aux Russes le centre financier de Londres, peut-on lire sur ce document publié par la BBC et plusieurs journaux.

 

De nombreuses sociétés russes ont choisi d'être cotées en bourse de Londres, alors que de nombreux oligarques russes possèdent de somptueuses demeures dans la capitale britannique.

 

Selon la presse, le document en question suggère que le Royaume-Uni n'appuierait pas de préparatifs militaires de l'Otan, et que l'ONU, et non pas l'Union européenne, devrait être en première ligne pour tenter de résoudre politiquement la crise en Ukraine.

 

A l'inverse, le gouvernement envisage une approche plus prudente incluant des restrictions de visas qui viseraient des personnalités russes, selon le Daily Telegraph.

 

Le chef de la diplomatie a noté que les réactions des marchés financiers montraient qu'il y a économiquement des risques importants pour la Russie, en pénétrant en Crimée.

 

Sur le gel d'avoirs individuels, il a mis en garde sur le fait qu'il fallait être bien sûrs de notre cas pour appliquer des sanctions à des personnes.

 

La veille, lors d'une visite à Kiev, William Hague avait mis en garde la Russie contre les conséquences et le coût d'une intervention en Ukraine, sans donner plus de détails.

 

Le Premier ministre britannique, David Cameron, avait, lui, souhaité une désescalade faute de quoi Moscou s'exposerait à des pressions diplomatiques, politiques, économiques et autres.

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29 janvier 2014 3 29 /01 /janvier /2014 08:40
Joint EU-Russia statement on combatting terrorism

 

28/1/2014 EU source: Council Ref: CL14-011EN

 

Summary: 28 January 2014, Brussels - Joint EU-Russia statement on combatting terrorism

 

1. Guided by our common goals and noting with satisfaction the new format of the regular meetings within the political dialogue on counter-terrorism under the auspices of the MFA of Russia and the European External Action Service, that allows, in particular, an exchange of views in this field, we agreed to further develop strategic partnership between the Russian Federation and the European Union, especially in combating and preventing terrorism, and to this end, in particular:

 

- consider possibilities for further strengthening cooperation in response to crimes committed by terrorists and organised crime, including exploring prospects of signing cooperation agreements in the future, to ensure, inter alia, an information exchange between Russia and the EU in the sphere of combating terrorism in conformity with their respective internal legislation including data protection standards;

 

- expand cooperation in exchanging best practices in counter-terrorism and training experts in counter-terrorism through joint seminars, training courses and other activities, the list of which will be adopted at consultations on combating terrorism within the Russia-EU political dialogue;

 

- intensify our cooperation in the UN framework as well as other multilateral fora such as the G8, in particular G8 Rome/Lyon Group, and the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum (GCTF), OSCE, and the Council of Europe, as well as other international organizations actively involved in combating terrorism.

 

2. The Russian Federation and the European Union condemn as criminal any acts of terrorism as defined by article 2 of the UN Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism (1999). Under no circumstances can such acts be justified, be it based on political, philosophical, ideological, racial, ethnic, religious or any other consideration. We declare that we are united in countering terrorism based on the rule of law and respect for human rights and believe that an effective response to this global threat will be achieved through coordinated actions of the international community under the auspices of the UN, based on the UN Charter, the UN Security Council resolutions, the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and relevant principles and norms of international law, in particular international human rights law, refugee law and international humanitarian law.

 

3. We commit to ensuring that measures taken against terrorism, including by international bodies, fully respect human rights and rule of law principles, and that human rights laws are applied and implemented in counter-terrorism programmes and policies of national governments. We affirm that effective counterterrorism measures and the protection and promotion of human rights are not conflicting but complementary and mutually reinforcing goals.

 

4. We state that, in spite of the success in addressing this challenge in recent years, terrorism remains one of the most serious and constantly evolving threats to global peace and security. In the context of the increasing speed of globalisation and the growing use of advanced technologies, terrorism develops rapidly, extends to new regions of the world, and the range of activities by its supporters expands.

 

5. We act on the premise that the fight against terrorism is a long-term process, requiring from the international community a complex approach and united efforts for countering terrorists striving to impose their will on states, both at national, regional and global levels.

 

We consider it important that the legal protection for individuals is ensured as international regulation on counter-terrorism intensifies.

 

6. We note with concern the growing ties between global terrorism and cross-border organised crime. We call for joint efforts towards concrete and full implementation of the United Nations Convention against Organized Crime (UNTOC), signed in 2000, and the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), signed in 2003, as key multilateral tools to fight transnational organized crime.

 

We are concerned by negative effects of the integration between drug syndicates and terrorist networks which creates a new challenge - the increased link between organised crime, drug trafficking and counter-terrorism. We call for joint efforts, with the coordinating role of the UN, above all, against global centres of heroin and cocaine production, as well as synthetic drugs, from which a part of revenues is used for financing terrorist activities.

 

7. We intend to strengthen our cooperation countering terrorist financing activities, as well as legal cooperation, in particular in extradition and legal assistance on criminal cases, including identification, arrest, confiscation and return of property acquired through terrorist activities. To this end, we will promote cooperation between the competent agencies of the Russian Federation and EU including Eurojust and Europol.

 

We will further strengthen cooperation and interaction through Financial Action Task Force (FATF) as well as in the format of the Council of Europe Committee of Experts on the Evaluation of Anti-Money Laundering Measures and the Financing of Terrorism (MONEYVAL) in order to ensure greater efficiency of joint efforts in blocking channels for financing terrorism and countering money laundering. EU and Russia will encourage a stronger commitment at international level towards fully tracking financial flows originating from illicit trafficking, including off-shore jurisdictions.

 

8. The European Union and the Russian Federation agree on further exchanges and developing cooperation concerning the prevention of terrorism, in particular on the radicalization and recruitment of terrorists, foreign fighters as well as on the protection of critical infrastructure in the energy field. In this context we also consider it important to focus on the conditions conducive to the spread of terrorism. We express concern with the increasing threat of misuse of the internet by terrorists for spreading terrorist ideology and propaganda, and for recruiting and training new members and supporters among citizens of Russia and EU Member States. We welcome cooperation and initiatives to counter these threats.

 

9. We note the importance of developing public-private partnership in combating and preventing terrorism, and contacts with all the components of the civil society, including media, religious groups, business community, cultural and educational institutions in order to prevent the spread of ideology of terrorism and violence.

 

10. We stand together to assist and support victims of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, according to our national laws and principles of international law. We underscore that victims of terrorism can contribute to the prevention of terrorism, including by serving as credible messengers against the ideology of violence espoused by terrorist groups.

 

11. We declare our commitment to:

 

- continue, individually and jointly, our international efforts to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and to ensure and strengthen the widest possible global counterterrorism coalition,

 

- bring to trial criminals, organisers and sponsors of terrorist attacks on the basis of the principle 'aut dedere aut judicare' (extradite or prosecute) and ensure that persons responsible for hiding, financing, and supporting them are punished in accordance with obligations under international law,

 

- strengthen international cooperation in order to prevent, detect and suppress terrorist attacks, identify, search for, and extradite persons involved in terrorist activities, block channels for financing terrorism, including through full implementation of relevant international counter-terrorism conventions and UN Security Council resolutions, in particular UNSC Resolutions 1373 (2001) and 1624 (2005), and the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.

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19 novembre 2013 2 19 /11 /novembre /2013 18:50
EU Foreign Affairs Council Conclusions on defence issues

 

 

18/11/2013 EU source: Council Ref: CL13-109EN

 

Summary: 18 November 2013, Brussels - Press Release: 3273rd Council meeting on Foreign Affairs in Brussels, 18 and 19 November 2013

 

President Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

 

Main results of the Council

 

The Council took stock of preparations for the Eastern Partnership summit on 28/29 November in Vilnius. The summit could see the initialling of the Association Agreements with the Republic of Moldova and with Georgia as well as the signature of the Agreement with Ukraine. Ministers discussed Ukraine's progress in implementing the EU's benchmarks for the possible signature of the Association Agreement, as set out in the Council conclusions of December 2012.

 

After the meeting, the EU High Representative highlighted that the main outstanding case of selective justice needed to be addressed and that the Council continued to support the efforts of the European Parliament monitoring mission to this end.

 

During lunch, ministers debated migration issues in the Mediterranean, as a follow-up to the European Council of 24/25 October.

 

In addition, the Council discussed latest events in Libya. It expressed the EU's concern about the significant deterioration of both the political and security situation in Libya and condemned the violence in Tripoli on 15 November, which resulted in the tragic loss of life among civilians.

 

The Council debated the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP), ahead of the December European Council.

 

To enable the EU to assume increased responsibilities for maintaining international peace and security through the CSDP, work has been on-going in three areas: increasing the effectiveness, visibility and impact of the CSDP; enhancing the development of defence capabilities; and strengthening Europe's defence industry.

 

EU leaders are set to take stock of progress in these three areas and provide further guidance during the European Council of 19/20 December.

 

Notes: Where declarations, conclusions or resolutions have been formally adopted by the Council, this is indicated in the heading for the item concerned and the text is placed between quotation marks.

 

Documents for which references are given in the text are available on the Council's Internet site (http://www.consilium.europa.eu).

 

Acts adopted with statements for the Council minutes which may be released to the public are indicated by an asterisk; these statements are available on the Council's Internet site or may be obtained from the Press Office.

 

ITEMS DEBATED

 

Eastern Partnership

Bosnia and Herzegovina

China

Southern neighbourhood

Migration

Common Security and Defence Policy

Operations

European Defence Agency - budget 2014

 

OTHER ITEMS APPROVED

 

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

 

- Relations with Jordan

- Cooperation with the Council of Europe

- Support to the World Health Organization

- Relations with the Kyrgyz Republic

- Tunisia

 

COMMON SECURITY AND DEFENCE POLICY

 

- Participation of partners in EU crisis management operations

- European Defence Agency report

- Development of EU military capabilities

- EU rapid response capabilities and EU battlegroups

- EU crisis management exercise

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3 juillet 2013 3 03 /07 /juillet /2013 10:50
Espionnage: réunion des ambassadeurs de l'UE jeudi

02 juillet 2013 Romandie.com (AFP)

 

BRUXELLES - Les ambassadeurs des pays de l'Union européenne se réuniront jeudi pour un échange d'informations sur les allégations d'espionnage des Américains contre l'UE, mais ils ne seront pas en mesure d'arrêter une position commune comme le réclame la France, ont confié à l'AFP plusieurs sources européennes et diplomatiques.

 

De son côté, la Commission européenne a estimé que cette affaire ne devait pas retarder le début des négociations pour un accord de libre-échange transatlantique qui doivent commencer la semaine prochaine à Washington.

 

La réunion des ambassadeurs jeudi permettra au secrétaire général exécutif du Service européen pour l'action extérieure (SEAE), Pierre Vimont, de faire un compte rendu de son entretien lundi avec l'ambassadeur des Etats-Unis auprès de l'UE, William Kennard, a expliqué une source européenne.

 

Mais arrêter une position commune, on n'en est pas là, a confié une source diplomatique, laissant entendre que l'UE était divisée sur l'attitude à adopter.

 

Le président français, François Hollande, presse pour une position coordonnée commune de l'Europe par rapport aux exigences que nous avons à formuler et aux explications que nous avons à demander aux Etats-Unis.

 

Mais le président du Conseil européen, Herman Van Rompuy, prône la retenue. Il faut avoir toutes les informations avant de lancer des accusations, a-t-il recommandé mardi devant le Parlement européen.

 

Si les faits s'avèrent exacts, alors il faudra agir, et j'utiliserai alors d'autres mots, a-t-il assuré.

 

Le chef de la diplomatie belge, Didier Reynders, a expliqué que si ces accusations sont avérées, une consultation au niveau des ministres de l'UE sera nécessaire. Dans un tel cas de figure, le gouvernement allemand réclame l'adoption d'une réaction européenne à l'unanimité.

 

Nombre d'Etats membres sont sur cette ligne attentiste, et certains sont convaincus que les Etats-Unis vont dissiper les préoccupations de leurs alliés européens.

 

Le gouvernement italien s'est ainsi déclaré confiant dans le fait que toutes les assurances nécessaires seront données dans l'esprit de collaboration et d'amitié qui caractérise le rapport entre nos deux pays.

 

La réunion jeudi sera surtout l'occasion de faire sortir du bois certains Etats, notamment la Grande-Bretagne, très silencieuse jusqu'à présent, a commenté une source européenne sous couvert de l'anonymat.

 

De leur côté, les Etats-Unis cherchent à savoir ce que les Européens savent exactement pour calibrer leur réponse, a expliqué une source européenne. Dans ce genre d'affaire, la règle du jeu, c'est pas vu pas pris, a ironisé un diplomate.

 

Il faut être un peu naïf pour s'étonner de ce que les Etats-Unis interceptent les conversations des diplomates de pays alliés, a souligné un autre diplomate en estimant que les Américains ne sont pas les seuls. Ni les Britanniques, ni les Français n'ont envie d'un grand déballage public, a-t-il ajouté.

 

Le président américain Barack Obama a promis de fournir à ses alliés toutes les informations qu'ils réclament, et le secrétaire d'Etat John Kerry s'est engagé à chercher à découvrir exactement de quoi il s'agit. C'est l'élément de langage donné pour l'instant aux ambassadeurs américains, a confié à l'AFP un représentant européen.

 

Au-delà des condamnations et des demandes d'explication, certains Européens veulent utiliser les négociations commerciales pour faire pression sur Washington.

 

On ne peut avoir de négociations ou de transactions sur tous les domaines qu'une fois obtenues ces garanties, a affirmé lundi M. Hollande.

 

On ne peut pas négocier sur un grand marché transatlantique s'il y a le moindre doute que nos partenaires ciblent des écoutes vers les bureaux des négociateurs européens, avait menacé dimanche la commissaire européenne chargée de la Justice, Viviane Reding.

 

Mais la Commission, qui a la responsabilité de négocier les accords commerciaux au nom des 28, a décidé de ne pas jouer cette carte, en estimant que le début des négociations commerciales entre l'UE et les Etats-Unis ne devrait pas être affecté.

 

Mais l'UE dira clairement que pour qu'une négociation aussi complète et ambitieuse réussisse, il faut la confiance, la transparence et la clarté entre les partenaires, a déclaré Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen, porte-parole de la Commission.

 

La réunion de jeudi sera consacrée également à la mise en place du groupe d'experts UE/USA décidé en juin après les premières révélations sur Prism, le programme américain de surveillance d'internet.

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24 avril 2013 3 24 /04 /avril /2013 20:50
Le SEAE pourrait faire beaucoup mieux si les institutions se coordonnaient mieux

 

 

24-04-2013 AFET Relations extérieures - REF. : 20130422IPR07535

 

Le leadership politique et la visibilité du Service européen d'action extérieure pourraient être améliorés s'il y avait davantage de coordination et de synergie entre le SEAE, la Commission et le Conseil, conformément à l'intention de départ de fusion des fonctions de Haute représentante, de Vice-présidente de la Commission et de Présidente du Conseil Affaires étrangères, ont estimé mardi les membres de la commission des affaires étrangères lors de leur premier examen du SEAE.

 

La structure du SEAE devrait être simplifiée et la duplication des services de la Commission et du secrétariat du Conseil devrait cesser, afin de permettre une prise de décision et des réponses politiques plus efficaces, estiment les députés. Ils suggèrent que la chef de la diplomatie de l'UE préside le groupe des commissaires en charge des affaires extérieures et qu'elle soit aidée d'un ou plusieurs adjoints politiques, responsables devant le Parlement.

 

Les députés font valoir qu'il convient de se concentrer davantage sur la planification stratégique et d'assurer une meilleure cohérence entre les mesures à court et à long terme. Ils prônent une "structure appropriée", semblable à un conseil de crise, réunissant des membres de différents départements en charge de la gestion et de la réponse aux crises.

 

Davantage de responsabilité politique envers le PE

 

Les députés demandent à ce que les nouveaux chefs de délégations dans le monde assistent à des auditions devant les commissions parlementaires responsables avant qu'ils ne prennent leurs fonctions. Les principaux titulaires de mandats au sein du PE devraient recevoir des comptes rendus politiques complets des délégations, ajoutent les députés. Ils demandent également des échanges systématiques avec les commissions parlementaires responsables avant chaque Conseil Affaires étrangères.

 

Des moyens appropriés pour servir les intérêts de l'Union

 

Les délégations, en particulier dans les pays instables, doivent posséder un attaché sécurité et défense, soulignent les députés. Elles devraient aussi davantage intégrer les droits de l'homme, avec un accent mis sur les droits de la femme, dans leur action. Les délégations ont besoin de personnel avec des qualifications et compétences requises pour refléter et servir les besoins et intérêts de l'UE dans ses relations avec le pays ou la région concernés, ajoute le texte.

 

Les délégations devraient aussi pouvoir offrir une protection consulaire aux citoyens de l'UE des Etats membres qui ne sont pas représentés dans leur pays, estiment les parlementaires, tout en rappelant qu'à toute tâche supplémentaire devrait correspondre de nouveaux moyens.

 

Vote en plénière en juin

 

La résolution de la commission, préparée par Elmar Brok (PPE, DE) et Roberto Gualtieri (S&D, IT) a été adoptée par 38 votes pour, 12 contre, avec une abstention. Le vote en séance plénière est prévu pour le mois de juin à Strasbourg.

 

La résolution finale constituera la contribution du Parlement au rapport d'examen 2013 du SEAE, qui est actuellement en préparation par la chef de la diplomatie de l'UE, Catherine Ashton, et devrait être publié cet été.

 

Sous la présidence de: Elmar Brok (PPE, DE)

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23 avril 2013 2 23 /04 /avril /2013 15:09
Les députés proposent des améliorations au SEAE lors de leur premier bilan

23-04-2013 AFET Relations extérieures - REF. : 20130422IPR07535

 

Le service européen pour l'action extérieure (SEAE) a besoin d'un moteur politique adéquat à sa tête, de structures simplifiées, d'une meilleure coordination et d'une planification stratégique à plus long terme, ont estimé mardi, les membres de la commission des affaires étrangères. Lors de leur premier examen du nouveau corps diplomatique de l'UE, deux ans après sa création, ils ont également affirmé que le SEAE devait rendre davantage de comptes au Parlement.

 

La structure du SEAE devrait être simplifiée et la duplication des services de la Commission et du secrétariat du Conseil devrait cesser, afin de permettre une prise de décision et des réponses politiques plus efficaces, estiment les députés. Ils suggèrent que la chef de la diplomatie de l'UE préside le groupe des commissaires en charge des affaires extérieures et qu'elle soit aidée d'un ou plusieurs adjoints politiques, responsables devant le Parlement.

 

Les députés font valoir qu'il convient de se concentrer davantage sur la planification stratégique et d'assurer une meilleure cohérence entre les mesures à court et à long terme. Ils prônent une "structure appropriée", semblable à un conseil de crise, réunissant des membres de différents départements en charge de la gestion et de la réponse aux crises.

 

Davantage de responsabilité politique envers le PE

 

Les députés demandent à ce que les nouveaux chefs de délégations dans le monde assistent à des auditions devant les commissions parlementaires responsables avant qu'ils ne prennent leurs fonctions. Les principaux titulaires de mandats au sein du PE devraient recevoir des comptes rendus politiques complets des délégations, ajoutent les députés. Ils demandent également des échanges systématiques avec les commissions parlementaires responsables avant chaque Conseil Affaires étrangères.

 

Des moyens appropriés pour servir les intérêts de l'Union

 

Les délégations, en particulier dans les pays instables, doivent posséder un attaché sécurité et défense, soulignent les députés. Elles devraient aussi davantage intégrer les droits de l'homme, avec un accent mis sur les droits de la femme, dans leur action. Les délégations ont besoin de personnel avec des qualifications et compétences requises pour refléter et servir les besoins et intérêts de l'UE dans ses relations avec le pays ou la région concernés, ajoute le texte.

 

Les délégations devraient aussi pouvoir offrir une protection consulaire aux citoyens de l'UE des Etats membres qui ne sont pas représentés dans leur pays, estiment les parlementaires, tout en rappelant qu'à toute tâche supplémentaire devrait correspondre de nouveaux moyens.

 

Vote en plénière en juin

 

La résolution de la commission, préparée par Elmar Brok (PPE, DE) et Roberto Gualtieri (S&D, IT) a été adoptée par 38 votes pour, 12 contre, avec une abstention. Le vote en séance plénière est prévu pour le mois de juin à Strasbourg.

 

La résolution finale constituera la contribution du Parlement au rapport d'examen 2013 du SEAE, qui est actuellement en préparation par la chef de la diplomatie de l'UE, Catherine Ashton, et devrait être publié cet été.

 

Sous la présidence de: Elmar Brok (PPE, DE)

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