Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Jean-Yves Le Drian is taking part in today’s meeting of the EU Council of Foreign Ministers.
Following on from the foreign ministers’ discussions in Brest on January 13 and 14 (in the so-called “Gymnich” format), this meeting will address the security of the EU’s eastern neighbors, and especially Ukraine, at a time of growing tension with Russia. The ministers will reaffirm a two-pronged European policy consisting of a) a deterrent posture toward any challenge to fundamental principles relating to Europe’s security and b) European support for and participation in diplomatic efforts under way in various formats. In particular, the minister will review France and Germany’s efforts in the Normandy format to promote the full implementation of the Minsk Agreement. During a video conference between the 27 EU foreign ministers and their U.S. counterpart, Antony Blinken, the minister will underscore the importance of continuing to work closely with our allies and partners on European security.
The ministers will also discuss the situation in Mali, which requires a coordinated European response in support of the decisions taken by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), by adopting targeted sanctions as quickly as possible, among other things.
The ministers will also address the situations in Syria and Libya.
Mr. Le Drian will stress the importance attributed by the French EU Council Presidency to the Indo-Pacific ahead of the first forum between the EU and its partners in the region; it will be co-hosted with High Representative Josep Borrell on February 22 in Paris.