Sommaire: 25 June 2012, Luxembourg - Council of the European Union PRESS RELEASE: 3179th Council meeting on Foreign Affairs
President: Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
Main results of the Council
The Council discussed developments in the EU's southern neighbourhood, focusing on Syria and Egypt. It strongly condemned the brutal violence and massacres of civilians in Syria and urged the Syrian regime once more to immediately end the killing of civilians and to allow for a peaceful transition for the sake of the country. The Council also condemned the unacceptable shooting down by Syria of a Turkish military plane on 22 June. In response to the escalating violence, the Council reinforced once more EU sanctions against the Syrian regime.
The Council welcomed the peaceful conduct of the presidential elections in Egypt and congratulated Mohammed Morsi on his election as President. The Council reiterated the EU's full support to Egypt's democratic transition and underlined the need for a full and swift hand-over to civilian authorities. At the same time, it expressed its serious concern about recent developments, which delay and hinder the transition and full handover to civilian rule.
The Council underlined the EU's determination to promote human rights and democracy throughout the world. It adopted a Strategic Framework on Human Rights and Democracy with an Action Plan for putting it into practice. The principles, objectives and priorities set out in the strategic framework are designed to improve the effectiveness and consistency of EU policy as a whole in the next ten years. The Council also prepared the appointment of an EU Special Representative for Human Rights.
During lunch, the EU High Representative briefed ministers on the talks with Iran on its nuclear programme, which took place on 23 May in Baghdad and on 18 and 19 June in Moscow. The Council reviewed the latest restrictive measures against Iran and confirmed that they would remain as approved in January.
Finally, the Council appointed Patricia Flor as EU Special Representative for Central Asia. She will succeed Pierre Morel, who has been in place since October 2006.
CONTENTS: ITEMS DEBATED
Bosnia and Herzegovina
OTHER ITEMS APPROVED
- Relations with Central Asia
- Relations with the Republic of Moldova
- European neighbourhood policy
- Relations with New Zealand
- Guidelines on EU sanctions
- Afghanistan - restrictive measures
- EU Special Representatives
- Association Agreement with Central America
- EU action on human rights and democracy in the world
- Arms Trade Treaty
- External financial instruments
COMMON SECURITY AND DEFENCE POLICY
- Framework participation agreement with the Republic of Moldova
- EU Border Assistance Mission for Rafah
- EU Police Mission for the Palestinian Territories
JUSTICE AND HOME AFFAIRS
- Review of the EU terrorist list
EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AREA
- Amendment to annex XIII (transport) to the EEA agreement
- Amendment to annex II (technical regulations, standards, testing and certification) to the EEA agreement
DECISIONS BY WRITTEN PROCEDURE
- Syria - restrictive measures
Download the complete Foreign Affairs Council Conclusions(pdf).