EU Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini visited the Middle East in the hope to revive peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority grounded to a halt more than a year ago. The two-day visit (20-21 May) to the region included meetings with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, and was aimed at ramping up the EU’s involvement in the Middle East peace process. It remains to be seen whether the EU will manage to fill the void left by the US as a peace broker. Deciding to use its full might in pushing for a feasible solution, including economic sanctions imposed on an unyielding Israel, seems a bridge too far
Shaken by some 1,000 migrant deaths in the Mediterranean in the past few days, while trying to cross through irregular ways into Europe, the EU’s foreign and home affairs ministers agreed today in Luxembourg to a ten point action plan to avoid such tragedies happening in the future. The plan foresees more resources for the joint operations Poseidon and Triton carried out within the mandate of Frontex, setting up a joint task force to identify human trafficking and smuggling networks, and sharing the responsibility of refugee resettlement among EU countries
Following negotiations over several years, and a marathon session from 26 March to 2 April 2015, the six world powers (China, France, Germany, Russia, UK, US) plus the EU reached agreement with Iran on key parameters for ensuring that Iran’s nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes only. A Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) will now be drafted, on the basis of the agreed parameters, by 30 June 2015 and implemented thereafter. The successful outcome of the negotiations was hailed as a “historic understanding” and a “good deal” by US President Obama.
Talks between the “six powers” (US, Russia, China, UK, France, Germany plus the EU) and Iran successfully concluded in Lausanne, Switzerland with agreement on key parameters to draft a of a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to be drafted by 30 June 2015. Joint Statement by EU High Representative Federica Mogherini and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad…
As the Saudi-led air strikes against the Houthi rebels in Yemen were starting on 26 March 2015, Federica Mogherini, the EU foreign policy chief, issued a statement saying that she was convinced that military action was not a solution. Did anybody listen? Apparently not the UK and France, who along with the US are providing support to the Saudi-led coalition. In view, though, of the risks and inconsistencies involved, Europe should be taking the lead in bringing armed hostilities to a halt and convening the international community and the Yemeni parties for immediate negotiations within fair parameters.
The EU has decided to implement the Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA) negotiated in 2005 and signed in 2009 with Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). The decision was taken at the meeting of the EU foreign ministers on 16 March 2015, following an earlier joint initiative by the foreign ministers of Germany and the UK. The SAA is intended to unblock BiH’s path towards EU membership, sidelining the earlier condition of implementation by BiH of the European Court of Human Right’s “Sejdic-Finci” ruling.
On 16 March 2015 the Iranian Foreign Minister, Javad Zarif, was in Brussels for talks with High Representative Mogherini and the Foreign Ministers of France, Germany and the UK. This was part of the six-power talks (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) with Iran on the latter’s uranium enrichment programme. 16 March was also the day of the EU Foreign Affairs Council (EU Foreign Ministers) in Brussels, chaired by Ms. Mogherini.
The first official visit of the European Union High Representative to New York on 8 and 9 March included a statement made at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) regarding cooperation between the EU and the UN. The speech reflected the current European foreign policy priorities: putting Libya “back on track”, fighting terrorism in all its forms and across regions, and saving the lives of migrants crossing the Mediterranean into Europe.
This is what she said: Mr President, It is an honour for me to address the Security Council in my first months as High Representative of the European Union. I would like to thank the French presidency of the Council for this opportunity to discuss our partnership. And I would like to thank you, Mr…