Tag Archives: Josep Borrell

Libya: Europe calls for ceasefire

“In the aftermath of the constructive commitments to halt fighting, resume dialogue and reach a ceasefire within the framework of the 5+5 joint military committee, taken in Cairo on 6 June, the High Representative of the EU and the Foreign Ministers of France, Germany, Italy urge all Libyan and International parties to effectively and immediately stop all military operations and engage constructively in the 5+5 negotiations, based upon the draft agreement of 23 February” reads the text of the Joint statement by High Representative Josep Borrell and Foreign Ministers Jean-Yves Le Drian of France, Heiko Maas of Germany and Luigi Di Maio of Italy.

“These efforts must lead all parties to swiftly agree on a ceasefire agreement in the 5+5 framework, including the withdrawal of all foreign forces, mercenaries and military equipment supplied in violation of the UN arms embargo from all regions of Libya, and to engage constructively in all strands of the UN-led intra-Libyan dialogue in order to pave the way for a comprehensive political agreement in accordance with the parameters agreed upon in Berlin”.

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”.

Borrell and Al-Serraj discuss IRINI

Josep Borrell, the EU top diplomat, called the Chair of the Government of National Accord (GNA) of Libya, Fayez al-Serraj, on 18 May to discuss the latest developments in the country.

The EU diplomat conveyed his concerns over the escalation of fighting in and around Tripoli and the increasing shelling on densely populated residential areas, that have resulted in casualties and a deteriorating humanitarian situation.

Borrell commended the Chair for his government’s openness to participate actively in the Berlin process and reiterated the importance for all the parties of the conflict to halt the fighting, agree on a lasting ceasefire and resume political negotiations. He underlined the EU’s continued firm commitment to a political solution to the Libyan crisis through the implementation of the Berlin Conference conclusions and reminded the Al-Serraj of the EU’s active engagement to advance towards that objective.

Borrell and al-Serraj also spoke about the EU’s new military CSDP Operation Irini, which aims to end the illegal flow of weapons and military equipment to Libya that have been fuelling the ongoing conflict.

The Operation IRINI is one of the EU’s contributions to the return of stability in Libya and an operational expression of its concrete commitment to the UN-led Berlin process on Libya.

The Operation is deploying its naval and aerial assets and using satellite imagery to ensure the broadest possible coverage, operating in the framework of relevant UN Security Council resolutions.

Borrell encourages Millenium dam negociated solution

The dispute between Ethiopia, Sudan and Egypt over exploitation of the Millenium Dam is a “matter of stablity” in the region, said the top EU diplomat Josep Borrell while commenting on the situation developing this week in the Horn of Africa.

“… We are following closely the talks, which were facilitated by the United States, and we regret they were not able to solve, or bring any kind of solution, but there are talks facilitated by the United States, and we are not part of this facilitating activity.

“We would be happy to participate if we are called for, but it is not the case, but we are ready to contribute to appease the situation, and to find a pragmatic solution”.

“I have been talking last week with all parties”, – Borrell continued. “And I strongly encourage them to continue the commonly agreed way forward”.

The diplomacy chief also announced plans to organise EU-Sudan partnership conference in Brussels together with Germany, the United Nations on June 22.

“It will be an opportunity for the international community to recall and renew their support to the ongoing political transition in Sudan” Borrell continued, expressing hope that there would be also “concrete pledges”.

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.

Borrell reaffirms EU support to CAR

EU top diplomat Josep Borrell, had a telephone exchange of views with the President of the Central African Republic, Faustin Archange Touadéra, on April 28, 2020.

On this occasion, Borrell reaffirmed the European Union’s support for the Central African Republic, in particular in this phase of the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. The diplomat confirmed that the European Union will soon organize, in collaboration with France, a humanitarian airlift for the transport of medical equipment necessary for the response to the pandemic. The head of the EU diplomacy also stressed the importance of combating disinformation and stigma linked to the pandemic. The European Union will also remain vigilant against those who are tempted to take advantage of the situation to hamper the stabilization process in the Central African Republic.

In this regard, Borrell reiterated the European Union’s support for the organization of the next presidential and legislative elections scheduled for the end of the year. These elections are an essential step in the process of democratization, reconciliation and peace in the country. European Union financial support for the electoral process already amounts to € 17.5 million.

The diplomat reiterated the need to accelerate the implementation of the Political Peace and Reconciliation Agreement despite the current circumstances. He called for the continuation of the dialogue between all the actors and the respect of the commitments made by the parties. Borrell reiterated the European Union’s resolute commitment to support this process, in close coordination with its partners, in particular the United Nations and the African Union.

The interview reaffirmed the solidity of the partnership between the European Union and the Central African Republic.

EU commends ECOWAS for Guinea-Bissau committement

The decision taken by the Heads of State and of Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to recognise the victory of Umaro Sissoco Embalo at the second round of presidential elections of December 2019 brings an end to a prolonged post-electoral stalemate which was detrimental to the stability of the country.

It is crucial that all actors respect the decision and work within the constitutional framework. As a first step, the President should appoint, at the latest on 22 May, a Prime Minister and a new Government in compliance with the provisions of the Constitution and in conformity with the results of the legislative elections of March 2019.

The EU commends the ECOWAS for its continuous engagement with Guinea-Bissau and remains committed to lend its full support to the consolidation of democracy and stability in Guinea-Bissau.

Libya: Borrell calls for humanitarian truce

On Libya, it is sad to say that the situation does not improve. Neither international appeals, nor the threat of the spread of coronavirus, have managed to stop the warring parties from fighting. The fighting continues and is even increasing” the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell said in his opening remarks at the press conference after a video conference of Foreign Affairs Ministers in Brussels.

“We need to further increase our engagement with the most influential international actors and conflict parties, to agree on a humanitarian truce – this is needed to deal with the coronavirus, but not only because of that – and on a ceasefire – this is needed for a political process to start and the conflict to end.

“We also addressed concerns of some Member States over the risk of increased migration flows. There will be no sustainable solution to migration challenges until we succeed in stabilising Libya. Unhappily, it is not yet for tomorrow”.

Libya: Borrell focus on arms embargo

EU top diplomat Josep Borrell participated in a G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting that took place via video-teleconference call on Wednesday, 25 March.

Addressing Libyan conflict Borrel stressed the urgency of turning the temporary cessation of hostilities for humanitarian purposes into a full ceasefire. He reaffirmed the EU’s commitment to support the UN-led process and the implementation of the Berlin declaration and reiterated the need for all parties to respect the arms embargo. The EU is working to deploy a mission in the Central Mediterranean to ensure the respect for the UN arms embargo.

EU-Africa paramount partnership

“This is one of the most important international partnerships that we are going to build. That is why we are here, the two of us together [with Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen], to stress the fact that this joint communication is an important first step towards a new partnership with Africa. From now on, we need to engage with our African partners on establishing joint priorities” said the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell at the press conference on the Joint Communication towards a Comprehensive Strategy with Africa, taking place in Brussels on March 9.

“We will have a summit with the African Union in October, which will be the culminating moment for our work on this Strategy with Africa, when we should jointly agree on common priorities and deliverables. We need to make our partnership visible and concrete for African and for European citizens alike.

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“The European Union is Africa’s first partner by all accounts: trade, investment, development, cooperation, security. We want this to continue, to scale it further and make it even more efficient. The European Union and the Member States – because the intergovernmental part and the community part have to work together – we have geopolitical interests in Africa. Our growth and security depends on what happens in Africa, maybe more than on any other part of the world.

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“If we want to reach our climate change goals and manage migration – just two pressing issues, migration and climate change – Africa is the key partner. There is nothing more important for us from the point of view of climate change and migration than what is going to happen in Africa. Africa can count on our renewed support to meet its objectives in terms of sustainable development, digitalisation, climate change and governance, peace and security.

“After our meeting in Addis Ababa, I went to Sudan and I witnessed how much the youth play a determining role on Africa’s future. The future of Africa, as much as the future of Europe, will be determined by the response we give to their political and economic aspirations.

“I want to stress how important our partnership is and is going to be. As High Representative and Vice-President of the Commission, this will be one of the most important endeavours I will have to face together with all the Commissioners of the cluster for a stronger Europe, and very much in particular Commissioner Urpilainen in charge of international partnerships. As I said at the beginning, this is one of the most important, maybe the most important international partnerships that we are going to work [on].

“My last word is to reiterate that the European ties with Africa are not about or for Africa, nor about Europe or for Europe. It is about two continents, two sister continents that have to work together for the future of their people. That is why the communication that we are presenting today is a first step in a process that will take until the autumn of this year, and beyond, towards a new Strategy with Africa.

“It is very difficult to stress how important it is, from many points of view, and especially for the most important political guidelines of the Commission – and climate change and migration are two of them, maybe the most important, but not the only ones. Digitalisation, wealth, job creation, the better understanding among our people is part of this rich and impressive work that we have in front of us”.

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