18 July 2016, Brussels – Main Results of the Council of the European Union Foreign Affairs Council
“All ministers agreed that we need to eradicate the roots of the hatred that we saw hitting Nice, Dhaka, Bagdad and other places in Europe, Africa, in the Arab world and in Asia. It’s a common threat to all of us. It’s only a common approach that can be the answer.”
Federica Mogherini, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
Fight against terrorism
In the aftermath of the attack in Nice, ministers discussed the fight against terrorism. They observed a minute of silence at 12.00 to pay tribute to the victims. Ministers expressed their condolences to France, expressed their solidarity and readiness to continue supporting France in the Sahel and in all external operations, also on the basis of article 42.7, as invoked by France in November 2015. They also discussed the ongoing work on counter-terrorism.
EU ministers discussed the latest development in Turkey. The Council then adopted conclusions. The EU condemns the attempted coup in Turkey and reiterates its full support to the legitimate institutions of the country.
The EU also called for the full observance of Turkey’s constitutional order and stressed the importance of the rule of law prevailing. It underlined the need to respect democracy, human rights and fundamental freedoms and recalled that the unequivocal rejection of the death penalty is an essential element of the EU acquis.
EU strategy on China
Just a few days after the 18th EU-China Summit in Beijing, the Council discussed China and adopted the EU strategy on China for the coming years.
Informal discussion of EU ministers with John Kerry, US secretary
Ahead of the Council meeting, EU foreign affairs ministers had a breakfast with US Secretary of State John Kerry. They highlighted the strength of the transatlantic partnership and its importance in addressing foreign and global challenges.
Ministers and US Secretary of State discussed the situation in Turkey. They expressed their support for the legitimate institutions and called for the respect of democracy and the rule of law. They also focused on the fight against terrorism, highlighting the importance of EU-US cooperation. Discussions also covered the situation in Syria, Libya, Russia and Ukraine, as well as EU-US economic relations.
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