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In Brest, the EU forms a united front against Russia – Summit of European Ministers in Brest
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In Brest, the EU forms a united front against Russia – Summit of European Ministers in Brest
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The European Union displayed, in Brest, its “very great determination” and its “unity” in the face of Russia’s threats to trigger an armed conflict in Ukraine and to jeopardize the security of the Old Continent.

EU Defense and Foreign Ministers gathered for three days of discussion in the Ateliers des Capucins, the buildings of the former military arsenal in Brest, at the invitation of the French EU Presidency.

“Ensuring our safety together”

“I have the feeling of a very great solidarity, a very great determination, a strong desire for coordination between the Twenty-Seven, affirmed the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian, Friday, during a press conference.

“The discussions gave everyone the feeling of having a common destiny, that is to say, to ensure our security together. It was very striking and I say it all the more easily since I have been taking part in these European meetings for ten years. I had never felt this. »

Solidarity with Ukraine

During these three days of discussions, the Twenty-Seven agreed on a common response to the ultimatums posed by Russia. It was the subject of a list of ten points which were detailed by the head of EU diplomacy, the Spaniard Josep Borell, described as the “Decalogue of Brest” by Jean-Yves Le Drian.

While affirming their openness to dialogue, EU countries have “rejected Russian attempts to rebuild spheres of influence in Europe (…) and reaffirm their solidarity with Ukraine and the other countries of Eastern Europe. ‘Is threatened by Russia,’ detailed Josep Borell.

Close collaboration with the United States

Above all, the Europeans underlined “their commitment to respond to new attacks against Ukraine, added the High Representative of the EU. Any further military aggression will have massive consequences and significant costs.”

“There is no doubt that the security architecture will be discussed with the EU,” added Josep Borell. Most EU Member States are NATO allies and there is very close coordination with the United States, both before meetings and after. »

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Tuesday that Europeans would always be consulted on their security before discussions with Russia, as was the case for the US-Russian meeting in Geneva (Switzerland).

Mali and Iran at the heart of the debates

European ministers also discussed the situation in Mali. Brussels is preparing, in the wake of West African countries, sanctions against the military junta in power in Bamako, which postponed the elections for several years. “If we are in Mali, we stay there, but not under any conditions,” said Jean-Yves Le Drian.

Regarding the ongoing negotiations on Iranian nuclear, Josep Borrell estimated that it was “possible” to reach an agreement “in the coming weeks” in Vienna. But the French minister, for his part, judged that the negotiation was progressing “far too slowly”.

“Either the Iranians want to conclude and then we have the feeling that the flexibility and agility of the American posture could be there, declared Jean-Yves Le Drian. Or they don’t want to conclude and then we are faced with a major proliferation crisis. »



In Brest, the EU forms a united front against Russia – Summit of European Ministers in Brest
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