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[Luxembourg 2005 Presidency of the Council of the European Union]
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Press Release
The European Union is prepared to support the reforms for stabilising and democratising the South Caucasus

Date of release : 15-04-2005

Policy area : General Affairs and External Relations

Event : Informal Meeting of Ministers for Foreign Affairs (Gymnich)

During their informal meeting at the Château de Senningen near Luxembourg on 15 Apil 2005, the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the European Union had an in-depth discussion on the South Caucasus.

On this occasion, the Ministers emphasised the importance to Europe of stability in the Caucasus region. According to Jean Asselborn, current President of the Council of the European Union and Luxembourg Minister for Foreign Affairs and Immigration, "stability and democracy in this region, situated at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, with Russia to the north and Turkey and Iran to the south is very important for European and international security".

The European heads of diplomacy also reiterated their determination to support the three countries of the South Caucasus by implementing the reforms undertaken to stabilise and democratise the region.

"The inclusion of three South Caucasus countries in the European Neighbourhood Policy is an important tool in this regard that will allow us to move closer to the region. It is important to recall that close links between the EU and the South Caucasus will bring their share of opportunities and challenges," stated Jean Asselborn. And he added in explanation: "Challenges on the one hand, because of the situation of frozen conflicts there and the obstacles those conflicts pose to the economic and social development of the region. Opportunities on the other hand, because of the promotion of the common values of rule of law and democracy, and the emphasis placed on the potential for economic development."

Following the recommendation by the Commission for strengthening relations with Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia, for the preparation of an action plan for each of these countries within the framework of the European Neighbourhood Policy, the Ministers for Foreign Affairs will have another discussdion on the issue during the "General Affairs and External Relations" Council of the 25 April.

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This page was last modified on : 16-04-2005

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