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Minister Flanagan to join EU Foreign Ministers at the Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels


- Agenda includes: EU Global Strategy, Africa and the Eastern Partnership
- Minister Flanagan will have bilateral discussions on Brexit with Portugal, Slovakia & Bulgaria
- Ukrainian Foreign Minister, Pavlo Klimkin will update Ministers before the FAC

The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Charlie Flanagan TD, is in Brussels today (Monday) to attend a meeting of EU Foreign Affairs Ministers.

The Foreign Affairs Council (FAC) meeting will have a strong focus on Africa, including the Horn of Africa and the future of EU – Africa relations. EU Foreign Ministers will meet with the Chair of the African Union Moussa Faki Mahahat. Ministers will also discuss the implementation of the EU Global Strategy and the EU’s Eastern Partnership. Minister Flanagan will attend a Friends of Ukraine informal breakfast prior to the meeting.

Speaking in advance of the meeting, Minister Flanagan said:

“I welcome the focus of today’s meeting on Africa. It is a timely opportunity to have an exchange of views on the humanitarian, political and security challenges in the Horn of Africa region, and to consider how the EU might work with countries in the region in responding to them. Ireland has already provided €13 million in humanitarian support this year in recognition of the challenges facing the region.

“We will also have a strategic discussion on the future of Africa – EU relations. Europe’s relationship with Africa is maturing and we should look to broaden our cooperation across a range of shared interests and values. There will be an opportunity to hear the perspective of the Chair of the African Union, Moussa Faki Mahahat, on these and other issues.

“I look forward to receiving an update from High Representative Mogherini on the implementation of the EU Global Strategy. There will also be a discussion among Ministers on the Eastern Partnership, which is a valuable tool for promoting peace, prosperity and stability, as well as human rights, the rule of law and fundamental freedoms in the EU’s neighbourhood.

“Prior to the Foreign Affairs Council meeting Ukrainian Foreign Minister Klimkin will update Ministers on the situation in Ukraine. EU Ministers are agreed that the key to resolving the crisis in Ukraine remains the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements.”

The Government’s programme of strategic engagement with EU partners on Brexit continues. While in Brussels Minister Flanagan will have discussions with the Foreign Ministers of Slovakia, Portugal and Bulgaria respectively to discuss ongoing preparations for the upcoming Brexit negotiations, with an emphasis on Ireland’s priority issues, namely the economy, Northern Ireland, the Common Travel Area and the future of the EU itself.

Press Office
15 May 2017