Category Archives: EEAS

DJIBOUTI: Borrell on EU-IGAD partnership

Brussels 20.12.2020 “The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) leaders are meeting in Djibouti today at a time when the region has pulled together impressively to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic and a desert locust invasion. And at a time, when the stability of the region is threatened by conflicts, ancient border disputes and a diplomatic stand-off” reads the statement of the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell on the IGAD Summit in Djibouti.

The European Union joins the millions across the region affected by the current crises, in placing their faith in today’s summit. We support all efforts to encourage dialogue and to silence guns.

As IGAD’s most significant international partner, we also hope that the outcome of today’s meeting will bring the region a step closer to finding a sustainable solution to the ongoing crises, in line with respect for international commitments and, in particular, international humanitarian law.

Regional organisations depend on their members’ mutual legal commitments. The solidarity that binds the IGAD Member States together is crucial for future decisive action”.

The 38th IGAD extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Governments has opened in Djibouti today, chaired by Sudanese Prime Minister Dr.Abdullah Hamdok, and attended by the African Union Commission Chairperson Mousa Faki.

The recent rift between Kenya and Somalia, Ethiopia and Sudan, the old conflict between Eritrea and Djibouti, in addition to the Tigray region crisis, will be on table of the the summit of the The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) of East African Countries.

The Summit is taking place few days after the military operations of the federal troops in Tigray region of Ethiopia have been concluded, however the the unfolding humanitarian crisis is still going on, raising concerns of the international community facing urgent needs of tens of thousands of displaced, and refugees.

W.Sahara: Borrell insists on respect of ceasefire

The High Representative Josep Borrell met this Sunday, November 15, with the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Morocco Nasser Bourita and of Algeria Sabri Boukadoum, to learn about the latest developments in the El Guerguerat area, following the latest events that took place there.

The High Representative recalled on this occasion the full support of the EU for the efforts of the United Nations and its Secretary General with a view to finding a peaceful settlement to the question of Western Sahara, in accordance with the relevant resolutions of the Security Council of the United Nations. United Nations and especially of the last resolution (2548) adopted on October 30, 2020. In this context, he wished for a rapid resumption of discussions under the leadership of the United Nations and a new Personal Envoy of the Secretary General of the United Nations for Western Sahara.

In particular, the High Representative underlined the paramount importance of ensuring respect for the ceasefire agreements in place since 1991 and reiterated the full support of the EU for MINURSO’s efforts to this end. In this context, the Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs assured the High Representative of his country’s commitment to respect for the ceasefire.

The High Representative also particularly insisted on the preservation of freedom of movement and cross-border trade in the El Guerguerat area, and its significant impact on the entire Maghreb and Sahel region, a region of strategic importance. A political solution to the question of Western Sahara is essential for regional cooperation between the Maghreb countries, the stability, security and prosperity of the region, and this even more in view of the current economic difficulties of the Covid-19 pandemic .

Spain categorically condemns the acts committed on Sunday by some participants in a rally (…) in front of the Consulate General of Morocco in Valencia,” said the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation in a statement.
These madmen entered the consulate building in an attempt to place the flag of the so-called “RASD” there, “thus undermining the inviolability, integrity and dignity of the consular headquarters”, underlines the Spanish ministry . “No demonstration exercised within the framework of the right of assembly can degenerate into illegal actions, like the attempt perpetrated on Sunday, which constitutes a flagrant violation of the legislation in force”, affirms the Spanish diplomacy”.

Borrell welcomes Sudan peace agreement

“The peace agreement initialled today between the civilian-led Transitional Government of Sudan and the Sudan Revolutionary Front signifies an important milestone for the ongoing democratic and economic transition of Sudan. reads the statement by the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell on the peace agreement in Sudan.

“Mediated with the help of neighbouring South Sudan, the agreement paves the way towards the establishment of a lasting peace in Sudan.

“Only an agreement implemented in good faith and in the spirit of cooperation can live up to the needs and expectations of the Sudanese people for a better life in peace and stability.

“On this occasion, the EU calls upon Sudan People’s Liberation Movement–North-Abdalaziz Al-Hilu and the Sudan Liberation Movement-Abdul Wahid Al-Nur to join the peace efforts for the benefit of the local communities who deserve to benefit from the changes underway in Sudan. This is the time for all Sudanese stakeholders to set aside their differences and to look for the greater good of the country and of all Sudanese.

“The EU remains committed to supporting the historic Sudanese transition”.

The government of Sudan and the main rebel alliance agreed on a peace deal on Monday, August 31, ending the 17 years of conflict.

The Sudan Revolutionary Front (SRF), a coalition of rebel groups from the western region of Darfur and the southern states of South Kordofan and Blue Nile, signed the peace agreement at a ceremony in Juba, capital of neighbouring South Sudan, which has hosted and helped mediate the long-running talks since late 2019.

The final agreement covers the major issues concerning security, land ownership, transitional justice, power sharing, and the return of the internaly displaced.

It also provides for the dismantling of rebel groups and the integration of their fighters into the national army.

The deal is a milestone in the transitional leadership’s step towards resolving multiple, deep-rooted civil conflicts.

Gymnich: attention to Mali

On August 26-27 the EU Foreign ministers might discuss the situation in Mali at their informal meeting in Berlin in the Gymnich format said the spokesperson for the bloc foreign affaris. The Foreign Ministers of the EU member states will have an opportunity to engage in an informal dialogue in a spirit of trust on current issues in the area of European foreign policy.

«The EU has condemned the coup [d’état] as the other African parities, and our priority now is to come up with the solution that is in line with the wishes of the people of Mali, so dialogue is only way to come out of this crisis in Mali, and the EU is remindig that the Consitutuional order must be established quickly by bringing back power to the civilian representatives as it has been said in the context of the CNSP [National Committe for the Salvation of the People] in order to meet the aspirations of the people of Mali.
«We would like to support the work which has been done by the ECOWAS, and thay are continuing to do so
” the spokesperson of the European External Action Service said (pictured).

On Monday, August 24 Mali’s military commanders and ECOWAS regional mediators discussed the roadmap and goals of a transitional leadership rather than the possibility of reinstating the ousted president, the initial proposal that was definitely refused. The meeting reportedly ended without an agreement of the timetalbe of the transiation, and new elections.
Initially, the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, had sought to put pressure on the officeers to reinstate the uppopular President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita — also known as IBK for short, and widely criticised for the endemic corruption in the country, reaching 40% of state funds diverted to private pockets.

However, from the beginning of the talks the diplomats understood that IBK reinstatement is highly unlikely giventhe popularity of the coup d’état leaders among the population, and the support they gave to the officers in their actions against the President and the government. At present the #CNSP is insisiting that the swit organisation of election is not their aim, because it will not introduce the profound democratic change the people of Mali demand. The CNSP are not prepared to commit themselves to a scheduled elections timetalbe and follow it at any cost, although they understand it is the prference of the negihgours and the internaitonal community to have a democratically elected government without delay.

EU condemns coup d’état in Mali

“The European Union condemns the coup d’état attempt underway in Mali and rejects any anti-constitutional change. This can in no way be a response to the deep socio-political crisis that has hit Mali for several months” the statement of the European Union top diplomat Josep Borrell on events in Mali.

“In consultation with its partners in the international community, particularly ECOWAS, the African Union and the United Nations, the EU calls for dialogue. A consensual outcome, while respecting constitutional principles, international law and human rights is the only way to avoid destabilization not only of Mali but of the entire region. The EU continues to give its full support to the mediation undertaken by ECOWAS. Contacts are underway to better understand the situation and decide on the next steps in the action of the international community”. Image above: illustration, Mali.

AMENDED: “Mutineering soldiers have detained Mali’s President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Prime Minister Boubou Cisse, one of their leaders has told @AFP.

“We can tell you that the president and the prime minister are under our control,” the leader said.

There are unverified reports by local media, that coup État in Bamako was possibly organised by Colonel Sadio CAMARA (DIAW) and his troops. Heavily armed vechicles were on the way to center of Bamako. According to local sources several ministers have been arrested. President Keita was evacuated to a military base.

French Minister of Foreign Affaires Jean-Yves le Drian issued a statement, condemining the unconsitutional power grab in Mali.

AMENDED: A rebellion broke out at an army base in Kati, outside capital city Bamako. The rebels arrested a number of ministers, including foreign and finance ministers, and the parliament speaker.

According to the Malijet news website, the rebels are led by Colonel Sadio Camara, former director of a military school at the Kati military base. The Malian General Staff is also reportedly controlled by the rebels, with a number of senior officers being arrested.

Several sources point to the Colonel Sadio CAMARA from DIAW has been leading the coup d’état.

AMENDED: the residence of the President Keita is occupied by a celebrating crowed, enjoying swimming pool. However some buildings are set on fire, and there is looting going on in Bamako.
AMENDED: Accoriding to the BBC correspondent in Bamako the mutiny is led by Colonel Malick Diaw deputy head of the Kati camp, and General Sadio Camara.

EU: South Sudan «deserves peace»

“The people of South Sudan deserve lasting peace. The political and inter-communal violence occurring in Central Equatoria, Jonglei, Lakes, Warrap and other parts of the country is of great concern” reads the the declaration on South Sudan by the EU High Representative Josep Borrel, on behalf of the European Union, on delays in the implementation of the peace agreement and widespread violence

“The perpetuation of violence leading to a high number of fatalities, forced displacement, sexual and gender-based violence and other human rights abuses, must stop. These conflicts have also killed humanitarian workers and are hampering the delivery of principled humanitarian aid in areas affected by severe food insecurity and recurrent natural disasters.

“This situation is worsened by the regrettable stalling of the implementation of the peace agreement and the high proliferation of arms in the country. Violations of the ceasefire are also being reported and investigated by the monitoring bodies. The ceasefire must be fully respected by all actors, including those who are party to the Rome Declaration. The recent renewal of sanctions by the UN Security Council, including of the arms embargo on South Sudan is welcome in this regard and will help support an inclusive and sustainable peace in South Sudan. The fulfilment of security arrangements also remains imperative.

“In line with the declaration of the IGAD Council of Ministers on 23 April, which deadlines have unfortunately not been respected by the South Sudanese parties, a swift agreement on and completion of state governorships and other political nominations is vital, as is ensuring women represent 35% of those in public office.

“These gaps in national and local governance systems are hampering conflict resolution efforts. This is all the more important in view of the need for a whole-of-society effort in the containment of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“To step up EU support to South Sudan, genuine progress in the reforms foreseen by the peace agreement, including those related to transparent public financial management, is needed, as is accountability for human rights abuses to stop the culture of impunity. The set-up of transitional justice institutions is also paramount.

“The EU calls upon the South Sudanese government and all relevant stakeholders to redouble efforts to proceed in the timely implementation of the peace agreement through political compromise, to stop the widespread violence that is deeply impacting on the population of South Sudan and to facilitate the safe and unhindered access of humanitarian workers to those most in need and affected by the conflict. The EU supports and further encourages IGAD and its Member States to continue to step up their efforts to monitor and support peace implementation in South Sudan. The EU also supports the efforts of the AU, which will remain instrumental to support the full implementation of the peace agreement”.

South Sudanese security forces killed at least five people in Juba on June 3, 2020 during a violent confrontation over a land dispute and subsequent peaceful protests, Human Rights Watch said. They called the authorities to investigate thoroughly and promptly hold those responsible to account in a transparent civilian process.

Borrell condemns barbarism in Ituri

Ituri province in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has been hit for several weeks by an intensification of almost daily systematic attacks against the civilian population. Since the beginning of the year, nearly 300 people have been killed and more than 200,000 people have fled the atrocities.

“These barbaric acts must stop. It is up to the Congolese authorities and the UN Mission for Stabilization in the DRC (MONUSCO) to put an end to the actions of the CODECO armed militia and to bring the alleged perpetrators to justice. No feeling of impunity can prevail. It is also essential to give priority to dialogue and to fight against any instrumentalization of identity.

“What is happening in the east of the Democratic Republic of the Congo cannot become a forgotten crisis; and efforts to end insecurity in this region must be accelerated. The European Union stands ready to support the efforts of the Congolese authorities in this direction, in coordination with its partners.

“Finally, the European Union does not exclude taking adequate measures with regard to individuals, groups or organizations which contribute by their actions to undermining the preservation of peace or to serious human rights violations”.

EU will not send observers to Malawi

The European diplomacy reiterated its call for restraint to political actors in Malawi.
“It is especially important at this time that all political actors should stand united in the defence of human rights and Rule of Law, and against any acts of violence, incitement or hate speech” the EU spokesperson for the Foreign Affairs said, quoting a statement of the EU Mission in Malawi.

On May 6, being “shocked” and “saddened” by acts of violence the EU Mission in Malawi together with Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States reacted upon the lamentable episodes, fuelled by political motives, hoping that those responsable would be brought to justice, following the transparent investigations in the frame of the Malawi law.

However the EU has no plans to send the observers for the possible presidential elections postponed to July 2. In general the European External Action Service (EEAS) has to re-asses the deployment of the Observation missions, but “in this case Malawi is not a part of the EU observation mission priority for 2020, the EU will not send the Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) for the re-run of the Presidential elections in Malawi” the spokesperson said commenting on the issue. She reminded that at present the issue of re-running of the presidential elections on the July 2 is examined by the Supreme court in the capital city Lilongwe, and the decision of the judges will “determine if the Presidential election will be or not repeated in July“, she added.

The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) had declared President Peter Mutharika the narrow winner of the May election with 38% of votes, followed by Lazarus Chakwera with 35% and former Vice President Saulos Chilima third with 20%, while four other candidates collectively received of 6% of ballots.

Since the announcement of the election results almost a year ago, Malawi has experienced a wave of protests across the country demanding the resignation of Jane Ansah, the chairwoman of the MEC for allegedly mismanaging the elections. The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) defended its managment of the process, being within the legal framework.

Sudan bans FGM

“The decision of Sudan to ban female genital mutilation is another historic step forward in the country. We praise the Government of Sudan in its entirety for taking this bold and historic step towards the full realisation of women’s and girls’ rights. The road towards a democratic and prosperous Sudan with equal rights and opportunities for all is long, but can only be travelled by taking steps like these. The European Union stands ready to support Sudan to implement this decision.

“The same way they led the revolution last year, Sudanese women have led the fight to end female genital mutilation (FMG) in their country and serve as an example to the world.

“World leaders have committed to eliminate FGM by 2030; today this practice remains carried out in more than 90 countries in the world. Banning or criminalizing FGM is the first step of a long process to end a practice, which in many countries is enmeshed with tradition and religious beliefs.

“The European Union is committed to promote the global trend towards banning the FGM practice and all other forms of harmful practices discriminating against women in various ways”.

Statement by High Representative/ Vice-President Josep Borrell and Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen on the ban of female genital mutilation original on Twitter inserted above.

South Soudan elections as key to stability

European Council today adopted conclusions stating the EU’s determination to stand by the people of South Sudan in their quest for peace and prosperity, and in facing the consequences of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which risks having far-reaching humanitarian and economic consequences on the newfound stability of the country.

In its conclusions the Council states that the EU welcomes the formation of the Revitalised Transitional Government of National Unity (R-TGoNU) in South Sudan as a key step towards a long lasting peace and inclusive and sustainable development in the country, and that full respect of the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement of December 2017 is imperative. In this context, the EU underlines the importance of the fulfilment of the security arrangements with the demobilisation of former combatants to ensure the safety and security of all citizens and calls on the UN Security Council to renew the arms embargo.

The Council conclusions stress that the holding of free and credible general elections at the end of the transitional period will be another step towards stability, and that journalists, civil society and human rights defenders must be enabled to operate freely.

At the same time the Council deplores widespread violations of human rights and the culture of impunity. The EU stands ready to adopt further restrictive measures if such violations continue or the peace process is undermined.

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