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[Luxembourg 2005 Presidency of the Council of the European Union]
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Press Release
Presidency outlines issues for discussion at Informal Meeting of Foreign Ministers in Luxembourg

Date of release : 14-04-2005

Policy area : General Affairs and External Relations

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

Jean Asselborn, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Immigration and current President of the Council of the European Union, has invited his colleagues to an Informal Meeting of EU Foreign Ministers, which will take place in Luxembourg on 15 and 16 April 2005.

It is an established tradition to have an informal meeting of Foreign Ministers during each EU Presidency. These meetings are popularly called "Gymnich", so named after the castle north of Bonn in Germany that was the venue of the first meeting of this kind.

The meeting takes no formal decisions. Instead, the Foreign Ministers, together with the High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy Javier Solana and External Relations Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner are to have a free and open debate on some topical issues on the EU foreign policy agenda.

The meeting will begin with a working lunch on Friday, when Ministers will discuss the issue of frozen conflicts in the South Caucasus and the situation in Byelorussia. The afternoon session will be devoted to a strategic discussion on China and its neighbours.

On Saturday morning, Ministers will dicuss the European Union’s relations with the countries of the Mediterranean region and the Middle East. Over lunch the 25 Foreign Ministers of the European Union will be joined by their colleagues from the four candidate countries – Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia and Turkey – for an exchange of views on the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

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This page was last modified on : 14-04-2005

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