Ulkoministeriö / Utrikesministeriet

Foreign Minister Haavisto to attend the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels and to meet NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg

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EU foreign ministers will convene in Brussels on 24 January. The main items on the agenda are the security situation in Eastern Europe and the latest developments in Libya and Syria. The ministers will also discuss the EU Strategy for Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific and the situation in Mali, Sudan and Kazakhstan. Later the same day, Foreign Minister Haavisto and Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Ann Linde will meet NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

The foreign ministers will continue their discussion from the informal meeting of foreign ministers (Gymnich) in Brest focusing on the security situation in Eastern Europe and the recent Russian activity near the border with Ukraine. Dialogue and diplomacy are keys to resolving the situation. Finland strongly supports the OSCE’s activities and the negotiations of the OSCE Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine and emphasises the importance of the EU’s unity and continued transatlantic collaboration. The EU foreign ministers will also exchange views on European security with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who will attend the meeting via video conference.

The foreign ministers will discuss the effects of postponing the elections in Libya that were originally scheduled to take place in December. Finland’s view is that the EU should give support to the mediation efforts of UN Special Adviser on Libya Stephanie Williams and back up the Berlin Process initiated by Germany and the UN to support the mediation efforts to end the conflict in Libya.

The foreign ministers will also exchange views on the EU’s response to the conflict in Syria and discuss the EU’s efforts to helping bring about peace in Syria with UN Special Envoy Geir O. Pedersen, who will visit the Council meeting. Finland considers that the EU should review its Strategy on Syria to better address the current situation. It is important that the EU has a significant role in furthering a solution to the conflict in Syria.

Foreign Minister Haavisto will also meet NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg together with Sweden’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Ann Linde on 24 January in Brussels. They will discuss the current security policy situation.

Inquiries:
Sampo Saarinen, Diplomatic Adviser to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, tel. +358 295 350 404
Matti Nissinen, European Correspondent, tel.  +358 295 351 780 (Foreign Affairs Council)
Minna Laajava, Director of the Unit for Security Policy and Crisis Management, tel. +358 295 350 128 (meeting with NATO Secretary General)
The email addresses of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs are in the format firstname.lastname@formin.fi.

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