Europe and the United States, natural partners beyond disagreements

Europe and the United States, natural partners beyond disagreements

I write after a week spent in Boston, Brussels and Milan. First, at Harvard University for a day of discussions with students and professor on relations between the United States and Europe: in spite of the current disagreements on specific issues, we remain natural partners. Here is my speech in Harvard and the first part of my dialogue with students and professors. Back to Brussels, our common work with our friends on the other side of the Atlantic continued at the NATO Foreign Ministers’ meeting. We focused mostly on our cooperation with our partners in the Balkans, on Afghanistan and the situation in the Sea of Azov. This is what I told journalists before the meeting. Our work on European defence and on strategic autonomy was at the centre of the EU Institute for Security Studies’ annual conference – here is my video message to the event. We also discussed tensions between Russia and Ukraine on Thursday at the meeting of the Organisation for security and cooperation in Europe, hosted by Italy in Milan. There I met with both Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin, who will be our guest at the Foreign Affairs Council next Monday. Here is my speech in Milan. On Wednesday, at the weekly meeting of the College of European Commissioners, we took three important decisions: we approved the proposal for an agreement on the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union, a new plan against disinformation campaigns, and a strategy on the new frontiers in the field of artificial intelligence. During the week, in Brussels, I also met with Libyan President Fayez al Sarraj, Armenian...
National sovereignty today needs the European Union

National sovereignty today needs the European Union

I write after a week spent in Strasbourg and Brussels. First at the weekly meeting of the College of Commissioners and the European Parliament’s plenary in Strasbourg: we worked on the tragic case of Jamal Khashoggi, killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul (here is my speech in Strasbourg, here the statement we released with the G7 Foreign Ministers), on the situation in Crimea and the Sea of Azov (video here), and on how to support a political process to end the crisis in Venezuela (video). More work on America Latina as I came back to Brussels: I met with Colombia’s President Ivan Duque – here is the press conference with him and Jean-Claude Juncker. In Brussels I joined the meeting of the Member States’ Chiefs of Defence, where we discussed our common work for European defence; I took part in the meeting of Catholic bishops who lead national Bishops’ Conferences all across Europe (at the annual COMECE conference); and I inaugurated an installation to celebrate the seventieth anniversary of the United Nations and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The installation was hosted in New York and Geneva before, the two cities of the United Nations: we have now welcomed it in Brussels, at the heart of European institutions, to symbolise the close friendship between the UN and the EU – video here. Finally, yesterday in Milan I met with Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez, and together with him I spoke at the Democratic Party’s national Forum – here is my speech, in Italian, on why in today’s world European countries need the European Union to strengthen their national...