Press release on the meeting between HR/VP Federica Mogherini and the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

The HR/VP Federica Mogherini met Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu in the margins of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos. They exchanged views on the bilateral relations between the European Union and Israel, a strong and comprehensive partnership. The historical, cultural, political and economic links between Israel and the European Union are deeply rooted with significant potential to develop further. They discussed the situation in the region, the current tensions in Israel and the West Bank and measures to end the current cycle of incitement and violence. They also discussed next steps on the Middle East Peace Process and the importance of making progress towards the two-state solution. Securing a just and lasting peace remains crucial for Israelis and Palestinians, as well as for the region and beyond. That is why it is a priority for the EU. The EU will remain actively engaged with both Israelis and Palestinians, including through the Quartet, in strong coordination with other international and regional partners, starting from the Arab...

Press release on the meeting between Federica Mogherini and Prime Minister of Lebanon, Tammam Salam

High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini met this evening with Prime Minister of Lebanon, Tammam Salam, at the margins of the World Economic Forum in Davos. The High Representative and the Prime Minister discussed topics of common concern such as the Syria crisis, the impact of refugees, the fight against terrorism and the tensions in the region. HR/VP Mogherini highlighted the EU long-standing commitment to Lebanon, and the strong determination to further enhance cooperation. Ahead of London Conference on Syria on 4th February, both agreed to do more to sustainably address the needs of refugees and host communities by creating jobs and providing education, offering better living conditions, and greater hope for the future. The High Representative conveyed to the Prime Minister her appreciation for his dedication to his country at such challenging times. She also renewed the EU call on all political forces to overcome divisions and elect a President, for the sake of Lebanon’s stability. The EU is determined to make the EU-Lebanonpartnership even...

Press release on the meeting of Federica Mogherini and the President of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani

Today in the margins of the World Economic Forum in Davos, HR/VP Federica Mogherini met with the President of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani. The meeting served as an opportunity to discuss preparations for the next Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan, to be held on 4-5 October in Brussels, and following the NATO Summit meeting in Warsaw in July. Both sides took stock of the good progress made so far, and stressed the need to mobilise the necessary resources for the security, state-building and development of Afghanistan in the coming years as well as to provide further momentum for the country’s crucial reform agenda. In this regard, HR/VP Mogherini welcomed the strong commitment to change shown by President Ghani and the National Unity Government. Continued implementation of reforms will be essential to build a better, stable, democratic and prosperous future for the Afghan citizens. The High Representative reiterated the EU’s commitment to supporting Afghanistan in priority areas such as improving governance, creating economic growth and jobs, addressing migration flows, and fostering the rights of women and children. The two discussed the increasingly difficult security environment in Afghanistan, emphasising the need to ensure peace and reconciliation in the country by capitalising on enhanced regional cooperation and a renewal of meaningful peace...

Our solidarity with France after the Paris attacks. Speech at the European Parliament

M le Président, Mesdames, Messieurs les députés, Ceux-ci ne sont pas des temps ordinaires pour l’Europe. Nous faisons face à des défis sans précédents. Nos citoyens nous demandent quel est le sens de notre Union. Quelqu’un prétends qu’une Union à 28 soit trop complexe, trop «plurielle» pour prendre des bonnes décisions dans cette époque difficile. Nous avons le devoir de réagir à ces préoccupations. Notre réponse face aux horribles attentats de Paris a surpris beaucoup d’observateurs. Certains d’entre eux avait préconisé que dans l’heure la plus sombre l’Europe aurait été divisée, déchirée par des luttes intestines. J’ai assisté à tous les sommets européens après vendredi 13 Novembre, donc laissez-moi vous le dire: notre réponse a été celle d’une vraie Union, à partir du premier jour. Comme vous le savez, après les attaques terroristes de Paris, la France a demandé le soutien des autres états membres, comme prévu par l’article 42.7 du Traité de l’Union européenne. Lors du Conseil des ministres européens de la défense du 17 novembre dernier, les états membres ont envoyé un message très fort d’unité et de solidarité à la France. Beyond the political message, Article 42.7 TEU contains concrete obligations for Member States. Indeed, the Member States have an obligation (“shall”) to “provide aid and assistance to the MS under attack with all the means in their power”. This formulation is usually understood as referring to the use of military means, but no doubt Article 42.7 also covers assistance through other instruments or means of support of non-military nature. The article expresses a high-level of commitment. It is up to each Member State to determine...