Croatian Foreign and European Affairs Minister Gordan Grlić Radman on Thursday and Friday attended an informal meeting of EU foreign ministers (Gymnich), organised in Brest by the French Presidency of the Council of the EU, write Total Croatia News
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The meeting opened with a debate by foreign and defence ministers on a revised draft of the EU Strategic Compass.
“We welcome the global ambition of this document as well as the fact that it underlines the EU’s role in the neighbourhood, including the Western Balkans. We also mentioned the importance of the partnership with the USA and NATO,” Grlić Radman said, adding that the document has to be inclusive and encompass each member state’s security problems.
The ministers also discussed the situation in the EU’s eastern neighbourhood and possible responses to short and long-term challenges in that region.
“We have sent a clear message about the importance of defusing the situation, as well as of close coordination with NATO and the USA, stressing that the EU should be actively involved in talks that concern its security,” the minister said.
He underlined the importance of bilateral contacts with Russia, noting that he would use his coming visit to Moscow to advocate efforts to calm tensions, promote dialogue and convey the EU’s common position.
The meeting also discussed the EU’s relations with China, with Grlić Radman underlining the importance of the issues of competitiveness and strategic dependence, and of giving priority to diplomatic solutions whenever possible, without giving up on the EU’s interests and values.
The EU ministers also met with representatives of the African Union, with whom they discussed further development of the partnership between the EU and Africa.