Newsroom / CNA
Cyprus Foreign Affairs Minister Nikos Christodoulides called on his EU counterparts for the practical and unambiguous EU solidarity to defend the sovereign rights of Cyprus, an EU Member - State, the interests and policies of the Union as well as international rule of law.
Nicos Christodoulides participated in the works of the EU Foreign Affairs Council (FAC), convening on Monday in Brussels for more than eight hours.
The Foreign Minister stressed to his EU counterparts that the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Cyprus is also an EU EEZ and reminded that Turkey's actions are in stark contrast to the obligation of the candidate country for good neighborly relations and the normalization of its relations of all EU Member States, including the Republic of Cyprus
Furthermore, Christodoulides debriefed his counterparts on Turkey's recent actions within the Republic of Cyprus's EEZ, which led to the postponement of the planned drilling of the Italian company ENI in the drilling site "3". The Minister of Foreign Affairs referred to the prospects for the energy wealth of the wider region of the Eastern Mediterranean, stressing that the energy plans of the Republic of Cyprus are an integral part of the Union`s energy policy.
At the same time, he referred to the importance of the Eastern Mediterranean for the EU's energy security and the prospects it offers for implementing the Union's policy to diversify energy sources and energy corridors.
According to the FAC agenda, the 28 discussed the situation in Ukraine, Syria and Iran, while the British Foreign Minister briefed his counterparts on the recent incident in Salisbury. The '28' also attended a working lunch with the South Korean Foreign Minister.
During a discussion on the situation in Syria, the Foreign Minister said that Cyprus fully supports the efforts of the Special Representative of the General Secretary Staffan de Mistura to find a political solution and achieve peace in the country.
Nikos Christodoulides called for a clear message to be sent to Turkey, highlighting the EU`s commitment to a sovereign and independent Syria, with particular reference to the need to continue the support of the EU to Jordan and Lebanon to address the adverse effects, especially in the economies of these countries, as a consequence of the presence of a large number of Syrian refugees in relation to the native population
In his speech on the matter, after referring to the deterioration of the situation in the country and especially Afrin, the Foreign Minister stressed that Cyprus supports EU policy. Regarding the latest developments in Afrin, Christodoulides, as well as a number of other Foreign Ministers, stressed that, the EU cannot overlook the very dramatic impact that Turkey`s actions in Afrin have created, for which we have an obligation, as an EU, to position itself.
Subsequently, during the exchange of views of the `28` on the Iran Nuclear Program Agreement, the Foreign Minister referred to the importance of the agreement and stressed the need to strengthen the dialogue with all the parties involved.
The Foreign Minister also participated in a working breakfast of the EU Foreign Ministers with their Ukrainian counterpart, Pavlo Klimkin, where the implementation of the Minsk accords to resolve the crisis in eastern Ukraine, EU-Ukraine bilateral relations and the promotion the necessary internal reforms, with an emphasis on tackling corruption were discussed.
It is noted that last night the Foreign Minister attended a dinner of the European People`s Party in the presence of Commissioners Gunther Oettinger, JohannesHahn and Christos Stylianidis, where the future EU Financial Framework and external relations issues were discussed.