In partnership with women: empowerment through action
Originally called International Working Women's Day, 8 March started as a Socialist political event. International Women's Day was first observed as a popular event after 1977 when the United Nations General Assembly invited member states to proclaim March 8 as the UN Day for women's rights and world peace.
EU Heads of State or Government held an extraordinary meeting in Brussels on Thursday to discuss the crisis in Ukraine. At the start of the meeting they heard from Prime Minister of Ukraine Arseniy Yatseniuk. Leaders endorsed the conclusions adopted earlier in the week by Foreign Ministers.
On 23 February, an official ceremony inaugurated the first “Train the Trainers” course, planned and organized by the EU's military training mission for Somalia (EUTM Somalia), at the Jazeera Training Camp in Mogadishu. EUTM Somalia's new Mission Commander, Brigadier General Massimo Mingiardi, was joined on this occasion by Somalia's Deputy Minister for Defence, Abdallah Hussein Ali.
On February 19th, EUBAM Libya attended a graduation ceremony for over 1,000 customs recruits at the Customs Training Centre in Tripoli.
The Informal Meeting of EU Defence Ministers will take place in Athens on 20-21 February. It will be chaired by Greek Minister of National Defence Dimitris Avramopoulos on behalf of the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton.
Following the previous summits held in Cairo, Lisbon and Tripoli, the fourth EU-Africa summit will take place in Brussels, Belgium, on 2-3 April under the theme "Investing in People, Prosperity and Peace".
In a wide-ranging statement to the UN Security Council in New York on 14 February 2014, High Representative Catherine Ashton spoke about ways in which the EU was working with the UN. She reiterated the "strong commitment of the European Union to support and work for effective multilateralism, with the United Nations at its core, in search of lasting solutions to critical international peace and security challenges."
The Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Yukiya Amano met with the HR/VP in Munich in the margins of the Munich Security Conference.
Eastern Partnership was the first topic of discussion at the Meeting of the Council of the European Union in Brussels on 10 February. EU Foreign Ministers focused in particular on the situation in Ukraine and High Representative/Vice-President Ashton debriefed them on her visit to Kyiv of the previous week.
The political crisis in Ukraine, support for reform in Cuba and a new EU military operation to support the troubled Central African Republic were discussed by EU Foreign Ministers on Monday 10 February.
The Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) met yesterday under the Chairmanship of the European Union to discuss its future engagement and organisation at the EU Institute for Security Studies, in Paris.
On the occasion of Holocaust Remembrance Day High Representative Catherine Ashton stated " Today the international community remembers the victims of the Holocaust. We honour every one of those brutally murdered in the darkest period of European history. We also want to pay a special tribute to all those who acted with courage and sacrifice to protect their fellow citizens against persecution.
On 22 January, Syria's government and opposition met for the first time in three years at a U.N. peace conference in Switzerland, along with delegates from international and regional powers. High Representative Catherine Ashton participated in the ‘Geneva 2’ Peace Conference, reiterating the EU's longstanding position of support to the peace process that should lead to a political solution to the conflict.
The European Union's foreign and security policy took several important steps Monday as EU Foreign Ministers meeting in Brussels agreed to suspend certain sanctions against Iran and fully support a peace conference on the civil war in Syria this week. The meeting, which was chaired by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton, also agreed that the EU would launch a security and defence operation in the Central African Republic for a duration of six months.
Beyond the suffering of the South Sudanese people, this crisis risks affecting a much wider region already prone to instability (Sudan, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Horn). We remain strongly committed to supporting regional and international efforts to end the violence, and continue to call for a negotiated solution that will allow South Sudan’s leaders to resolve their differences peacefully and democratically.