EU-facilitated Dialogue: Federica Mogherini held a meeting with Presidents Vučić and Thaçi

Federica Mogherini, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission, met on Friday 23 March with Presidents Aleksandar Vučić of Serbia and Hashim Thaçi of Kosovo. They discussed further, within the framework of the new phase of the EU-facilitated Dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, the preparations of a comprehensive agreement on normalisation of relations. They reviewed progress made in the implementation of the past agreements, in light of recent working sessions held in Brussels. The High Representative underlined the importance the EU attaches to the full implementation of all existing agreements and stressed in particular the urgent need to start with the establishment of the Association/Community of Serb majority municipalities, the Energy Agreement and proceed with the completion of the Mitrovica Bridge. The High Representative welcomed the continued commitment by both Presidents to the normalisation of relations between Kosovo and Serbia and recalled that progress by both on their EU integration agendas is firmly linked to progress in the...
With Israelis and Palestinians, to restart the peace process

With Israelis and Palestinians, to restart the peace process

I write after we spent the first part of this week working mostly on the conflict between Israel and Palestine. Last Monday, with the Foreign Ministers of the Union, we welcomed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to Brussels – after hosting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last December. We confirmed to Abbas our commitment to a solution of the conflict based on two States: the State of Israel, with West Jerusalem as its capital, and the State of Palestine, with East Jerusalem as its capital. We agreed on the need to relaunch the peace process in a multilateral format – with a central role for the European Union, but always together with the Quartet, our American friends and the Arab countries. At the end of January we will all meet here in Brussels – the Israelis and the Palestinians, the Quartet Members, Norway and other important partners – for an extraordinary meeting of the group of international donors for Palestine, the “Ad Hoc Liaison Committee.” Here is my press conference with Abbas, and here is what I told journalists before and after the Foreign Affairs Council. Yesterday I met with Yuli-Yoel Edelstein, the Speaker of the Israeli Parliament – a sign of our friendship and constant cooperation with Israel, not just to relaunch the peace process but also in our bilateral relations, and to tackle together the issue of anti-Semitism in our region. At the end of this week we will mark the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, and today at the European Commission we listened to the stories of three Holocaust survivors – Elżbieta Ficowska, Jehoshua Shochot ed Elisabeth Drillich....
At the United Nations’ General Assembly

At the United Nations’ General Assembly

I write after coming back from New York, where just like every year I took part in the the United Nations’ General Assembly ministerial week. It is a moment to show the European Union’s practical support to the multilateral system and the United Nations – the essential pivot towards peaceful solutions to today’s crises. It was an intense week, difficult at times, with many important achievements but also some tough moments. Starting with the tensions between the United States and Iran. Defending Iran deal On Wednesday night I chaired the meeting with the Foreign Ministers of Iran and the six countries that, two years ago, negotiated the deal on Iran’s nuclear program – the United States, China, Russia, France, Germany and the UK. Together we confirmed that Iran is fulfilling the agreements, as the International Atomic Energy Agency certified eight times. It is up to the IAEA to verify that all nuclear commitments are being implemented: this is what the deal states, together with a Resolution by the UN Security Council. For this reason, the deal belongs to the whole world, not just to one or two countries, and the European Union will do everything in our power to guarantee the deal is fully implemented by all. This is the message I delivered in my meetings with the Vice-President of the United States Mike Pence, with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, with Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif and and Russia’s Sergei Lavrov. Here is my press conference on Iran, here my interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour. For global non-proliferation In a moment when tension with North Korea continue, it would make no sense to dismantle a non-proliferation deal that is working...
Bad news on Cyprus, and some important achievements

Bad news on Cyprus, and some important achievements

I write on my way back from Crans Montana, in Switzerland, where over the last two days I took part in the final phase of the negotiations on Cyprus led by the United Nations. Long days and nights at work, which ended with no deal among the parties. It is very bad news, because peace in Cyprus could have put an end to over forty years of conflict, and it could have demonstrated once again the power of diplomacy. It would have brought stability and security to the region, but also new economic opportunities. From tomorrow on, it will be harder to imagine a path to restart the negotiations. But the European Union will continue to engage for cooperation in the region. And we will be ready to welcome a reunited, reconciled and peaceful Cyprus as a member of our Union. The rest of the week was instead dense with important achievements. Last Monday I invited to Brussels the Presidents of Serbia and Kosovo, Aleksandar Vucic and Hashim Thaci: together we decided to open a new phase in the dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina, towards a normalisation of their relations and to advance the entire Balkans on their path towards the European Union. Here is the press release. And yesterday the European Union and Japan signed an important agreement on free trade and political cooperation. Important not only because Japan is a long-term partner and one of the world’s largest economies. Together we are showing that the best response to the imbalances caused by globalisation is not a return to protectionism, but cooperation with our partners towards better rules for all – with more...

Federica Mogherini meets with President Vučić of Serbia and Thaçi of Kosovo

Federica Mogherini, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission, hosted this morning in Brussels an informal meeting with the Presidents Aleksandar Vučić of Serbia and Hashim Thaçi of Kosovo. They agreed to work on starting a new phase of the dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina for normalisation of relations and reconciliation, and they decided that the respective teams will start working on preparations. They also stressed the importance of the implementation of the agreements reached in the dialogue without delay. The High Representative confirmed the commitment of the EU for the European perspective of the whole Western...