The Daily Press Briefing

Statements made by
the Ministry for Europe
and Foreign Affairs
Spokesperson


Paris - June 12, 2020
In this issue:

◢  Coalition for the Sahel – Jean-Yves Le Drian's participation in the ministerial meeting of the Coalition for the Sahel (video conference - June 12, 2020)

◢  European Union – Jean-Yves Le Drian's participation in the meeting of foreign affairs ministers (video conference - June 15, 2020)

◢  Netherlands – Visit to The Hague by Amélie de Montchalin (June 15, 2020)

◢  Ukraine

 
Coalition for the Sahel – Jean-Yves Le Drian's participation in the ministerial meeting of the Coalition for the Sahel (video conference - June 12, 2020)

Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, will co-chair, today, together with Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed, Mauritanian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and Mauritanians Abroad, and Josep Borrell, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the first ministerial meeting of the Coalition for the Sahel. More than 45 ministers, as well as representatives of the main international organizations active in the Sahel (UN, African Union, ECOWAS) and multilateral institutions (World Bank, African Development Bank), will take part in this video conference, underscoring the internationalization of the Coalition for the Sahel called for by the G5 Sahel and the EU.

The minister will strongly reaffirm the importance of coordinated action carried out simultaneously in each of the four pillars of the Coalition for the Sahel: (1) the fight against terrorism; (2) the strengthening of the capacities of the Sahel's armed forces; (3) support for the return of the state and regional authorities; (4) development. This action reinforces the positive momentum observed since the summit in Pau (January 13, 2020) which resulted in the military operations by the G5 Sahel Joint Force and the national armed forces of the Sahel in coordination with Operation Barkhane as well as the fresh impetus given to the return of the state and public services, and support for stabilization and development.

The Coalition for the Sahel supports the efforts undertaken in support of the G5 Sahel with respect to restoring security and stability, justice and the rule of law and local economic development.



European Union – Jean-Yves Le Drian's participation in the meeting of foreign affairs ministers (video conference - June 15, 2020)

Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, will take part in the video conference of EU foreign affairs ministers on June 15.

This meeting will principally focus on the relations between the EU and the United States. During the meeting, the ministers of the 27 member states will have an opportunity to exchange views with United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on trans-Atlantic cooperation in the management of the Covid-19 crisis, the fight against disinformation and the importance of promoting multilateralism. This meeting will also provide an opportunity to discuss the EU and United States' relations with key partners such as China and Russia, as well as the crises in Africa and the Middle East, especially the Middle East peace process, in order to reaffirm the EU's attachment to international law and the two-state solution.

During the discussions with the U.S. secretary of state, France will notably stress the importance for the EU, as well as for the United States, of conveying constructive and convergent messages to China in order to defend a multilateral system based on rules and greater reciprocity, notably requiring more ambitious Chinese commitments in the areas of fair trade, the fight against climate change and sustainable development, without overlooking the issue of human rights.

The Minister should also underscore the great importance of the U.S. commitment in the Sahel to combatting terrorism, in support of Operation Barkhane and the G5 Sahel Joint Force, following the ministerial meeting of the Coalition for the Sahel on June 12. He will also bring up the issue of Libya, stressing the need to encourage all the Libyan stakeholders and their international backers to commit fully to political dialogue, and emphasizing the importance of quickly identifying a successor to Ghassam Salamé, the UN secretary-general's special representative.

Lastly, the ministers will address other current international issues, including the holding of a conference in Berlin on June 25 to support the political transition in Sudan, and the EU's commitment to compliance with international law in the eastern Mediterranean.



Netherlands – Visit to The Hague by Amélie de Montchalin (June 15, 2020)

Amélie de Montchalin, Minister of State for European Affairs, attached to the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, will visit the Netherlands on June 15.

There she will meet with Dutch Foreign Minister Stef Blok. Their meeting will focus mainly on the European recovery plan and the upcoming European budget for 2021-2027 ahead of the videoconference of the 27 EU foreign ministers, which will be held the following day, and which will lay the groundwork for the meeting of the heads of state or government on June 19. Ms. de Montchalin will underscore the need to swiftly arrive at an ambitious, solidarity-based agreement to provide substantial European support for the sectors and regions hit hardest by the crisis. The Minister of State will also emphasize how important it is for the 2021-2027 budget to respond to long-term European priorities, particularly programs contributing to European sovereignty such as the common agricultural policy, defense and space. The budget's funding process must also be reformed to create new resources consistent with European goals.

The ministers will address the lessons to be learned from the crisis in order for this recovery to make Europe more sovereign, more inclusive and more responsive. Citizens must be closely involved in these deliberations within the Conference on the Future of Europe.

The Minister will reiterate the importance of European coordination for the lifting of measures at the internal borders, the resumption of intra-European tourism, and the management of external borders. France's goal is to lift all restrictions at our internal borders on June 15.

The two ministers will also discuss the EU's future relationship with the United Kingdom, respect for the rule of law within the EU, and the transparency of European decision-making processes.

Lastly, during this visit Ms. de Montchalin will also meet with Dutch parliamentarians and representatives of the economic community.



Ukraine

A large Ukrainian delegation is currently in Paris. What details can you give us about these negotiations?

They are here for one of the regularly scheduled bilateral meetings between France and Ukraine.


France in the
United States
Embassy of France in Washington, D.C.
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