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February 25, 2021

ForMin Melescanu participates in FAC meeting in Brussels; meets Austrian, Polish counterparts on sidelines

Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu participated on Monday in the Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) meeting in Brussels, and on the sidelines of the even he had bilateral meetings with the new Polish and Austrian foreign ministers.

According to a Foreign Affairs Ministry (MAE) release, the main topics on the European foreign ministers’ agenda focused on “the latest developments in Libya, the Peace Process in the Middle East and a discussion on the proposal for a negotiation mandate for the Post-Cotonou Agreement.”

“In respect to Libya, the foreign ministers were informed by the UN’s Secretariat General Special Representative for Libya Ghassan Salame about the internal situation, including the main challenges in the political transition process. It was revealed the importance of a sustained support from the EU and the member states for the UN efforts, as well as for the consolidation of the Libyan institutions, aimed at better managing the regional challenges and those related to the illegal migration phenomenon,” the release mentions.

At the same time, the foreign minister had an extended opinion exchange on the Peace Process in the Middle East, including from the perspective of the recent developments.

“The talks revealed the need of the EU’s active involvement in supporting the Peace Process, in cooperation with the international partners in the Quartet and the Arab States in the region. The Romanian Foreign Minister, Teodor Melescanu, underscored the need for a fair and sustainable solving of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Implementing the two-state solution, Israel and Palestine, co-existing in peace and security, is the only viable option, capable to guarantee the fulfillment of the sides’ aspirations. In context, he resumed the call for unblocking the Peace Process and the resumption of the direct dialogue between the sides. In the future, it is necessary to have balanced approach of the two bilateral paths, namely convening the EU-Israel Association Council and the initiation of negotiations for concluding an Association Agreement with the Palestinian state,” the MAE release also reads.

During a working lunch, the European foreign ministers also had the chance to discuss with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

“The latest developments on site and the modalities through which the EU and the member states can support of a constructive manner the resumption of the negotiations between sided were assessed. Also reiterated was the support for a closer bilateral relation, including the EU’s support for consolidating the Palestinian institutions,” the release also reads.

Furthermore, the foreign ministers also had a working lunch with European Investment Bank (EIB) President Werner Hoyer, in which context the EIB official presented the proposal to establish a branch for EIB development.

On the FAC sidelines, Minister Melescanu had bilateral meetings with the new Polish and Austrian Foreign Ministers (photo), MAE points out.

“In the talk with the Austrian Minister Karin Kneissl, they approached the regional cooperation modalities in the preparation of the Council of the European Union presidencies, held by Austria (in the second half of 2018) and Romania (in the first half of 2019). They underscored the common interest in the Western Balkans, the Black Sea and the Danube region (including in terms of connectivity and navigation), as well as for promoting multilateralism based on international law and norms. Minister Melescanu voiced his concern for the Austrian Government’s initiative on child benefits for the children of Romanian workers in Austria,” the release mentions.

MAE also shows that the Romanian – Polish bilateral relations were assessed during the discussion with Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz, having highlighted the common interests in various regional and international files, the talks having revealed the commitment for strengthening the strategic partnership.

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