Ulkoministeriö / Utrikesministeriet

MFA: Minister for Foreign Affairs Haavisto to attend the meetings of EU and NATO Foreign Ministers

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Minister for Foreign Affairs Pekka Haavisto will attend the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels on Monday 22 March. The agenda highlights are the EU’s Southern Neighbourhood, Turkey and discussion with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet. In Brussels Minister Haavisto will also attend the meeting of NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs on 24 March.

The discussion on Turkey by the EU Foreign Ministers will take place to prepare for the European Council meeting on 25–26 March. The EU and Turkey share many common interests, and Turkey’s geographical location in the south-eastern corner of Europe is strategically very important. After the difficult year, the EU hopes for a turn for the better. To achieve this change, Turkey must show that it is ready and willing to resume partnership. Finland considers it important to have well-functioning, open and long-term relations between the EU and Turkey.

The Communication on the EU’s Southern Neighbourhood and the Economic and Investment Plan to support this were published in February. At their meeting in March, the Foreign Ministers will discuss the implementation of the plan and agree on concrete next steps to strengthen cooperation with the countries in the region. Finland considers it important that the partner countries are committed to common objectives and the EU’s values. The key values are respect for human rights and equality, and compliance with good governance and the rule of law.

At their meeting the EU Foreign Ministers will hold an informal exchange via video connections with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet. The EU plays a key role in the UN Human Rights Council. Finland has been dedicated to promoting human rights for decades. Finland is seeking membership of the UN Human Rights Council for the term 2022–2024.

The current affairs to be discussed at the Foreign Affairs Council are Russia, Venezuela, the Western Balkans, Georgia and Myanmar. With respect to Myanmar, new restrictive measures targeting those directly responsible for the military coup are to be adopted. The ministers will also decide on sanctions to be imposed under the global human rights sanction regime of the EU.

During his visit to Brussels Minister Haavisto will also attend the meeting of NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs on 24 March.

Inquiries, EU Foreign Affairs Council:
Turo Mattila, Diplomatic Adviser to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, tel. +358 295 350 613
Matti Nissinen, European Correspondent, tel. +358 295 351 780

Inquiries, meeting of NATO Ministers of Foreign AffairsMikko Kinnunen, Director General, tel. +358 295 351 820

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs’ email addresses are in the format firstname.lastname@formin.fi.

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