EU role for Syria to be reinforced, offering continuous assistance and supporting Geneva talks

New Europe / Alexandros Michailidis

High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission Federica Mogherini gives a press briefing at the end of the read-out of College meeting about the European Defence Action Plan in Brussels on Nov. 30 2016.

EU role for Syria to be reinforced, offering continuous assistance and supporting Geneva talks


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Foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini adopted a Joint Communication along with the European Parliament, a plan to further assist troubled Syria, on the way to a successful ceasefire, to improve stability and rebuild once a real political transition it to take place.

“The Syrians want peace, they deserve it, as they want and deserve to finally have the possibility to shape the future of their country. We are at their side to support the future of Syria,” said Mogherini from Strasbourg, where the European Parliament monthly plenary sitting it taking place.

Mogherini appeared “happy” that the EU is not a military partner within Syrian operations, suggesting that the cooperation between the EU and Turkey on Syria talks is good.

“There is much the European Union is ready to do,” said the EU foreign policy chief, putting hope to Astana, Kazakhstan peace talks. Astana talks, along with the EU’s assistance, could progress to a point where Syria’s political parties could meet on the same table in UN’s Geneva European headquarters.

The adopted Communication reiterates the EU’s support for Geneva talks, along with strengthening both the Syrian political opposition and civil society organisations.

The EU keeps being number one financing power in the area, having already mobilised over €9.4 billion since 2011, providing life-saving humanitarian assistance and resilience support to the Syrian people and neighbouring countries hosting Syrian refugees.

EU’s assessment of the risks and threats posed by the continuation of the war to the EU’s core interests, is clearly displayed within the adopted Communication, setting also a set of clear objectives for the EU’s policy for Syria

Ending the war through a political transition process negotiated by the parties to the conflict with the support of the UN Special Envoy for Syria and key international and regional actors is the number one priority. The EU suggests that “a meaningful and inclusive transition in Syria through support for the strengthening of the political opposition, in line with UN Security Council Resolution 2254 and the Geneva Communiqué” should be the scope of talks.

Promotion of  democracy, human rights and the freedom of speech by strengthening Syrian civil society organisations, as well as a national reconciliation process based on peace-building efforts, countering violent extremism and sectarianism are more points of what Mogherini presented on Tuesday.

As a next step, the Communication proposes clear lines of action to implement the above objectives, in close coordination with regional partners and international organisations.

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