At today’s EU Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels, EU foreign ministers discussed the Iran nuclear deal, the situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and cooperation between the EU and the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries after 2020. Foreign ministers also exchanged views on Venezuela’s presidential election and recent events in Gaza.
Foreign Minister of the Netherlands Stef Blok opened the meeting by introducing the investigative report published Thursday concerning the shooting-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.
“The report is a very clear evidence of the Russian armed forces being directly involved in the shooting-down of MH17, which they have denied so far," Mikser said. “The Netherlands and Australia have asked Russia to enter into talks to find a solution that would do justice to the suffering and hold those who are responsible accountable. The same position was shared by all EU foreign ministers present today,” Mikser added.
The Council continued by discussing the Iran nuclear deal in light of the latest developments. Mikser said that the EU and the US have a common goal – to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. “The EU must continue working on a solution to the situation in close communication with both the US and Iran. Transatlantic relations must also be taken into consideration in the process,” Mikser said.
Next, the ministers exchanged views on the presidential elections in Venezuela which were not fair, credible or transparent. The Council also adopted conclusions on Venezuela in which the Council calls for the holding of fresh elections in accordance with internationally recognised democratic standards.
Over lunch, foreign ministers discussed the situation in Gaza and the Middle East peace process, for which proposals are expected from the US. Estonia continues to see negotiations between the two countries as the only solution.
During discussion on the future partnership between the EU and the ACP countries after the Cotonou Agreement expires in 2020, Foreign Minister Mikser expressed hope that negotiations on the new agreement begin as soon as possible.
In the afternoon, foreign ministers discussed how the EU could promote credible elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The election date is set for 23 December 2018.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
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