18/10/2020 - HR/VP blog - At our last Foreign Affairs Council, we took stock of our relations with Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) at a time when this region is going through a dramatic crisis because of COVID-19. This was also much needed because the region has lately not been high enough on our agenda: we must reverse this trend.
The European Union welcomes the joint announcement of a humanitarian ceasefire by Armenia and Azerbaijan, scheduled to start at 00.00 hrs (local time) last night, following the mediation efforts by the President of France, Emmanuel Macron, in coordination with the other OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs. The EU deplores that, unfortunately, violations continue, with reported fighting in and around Nagorno Karabakh. This leads to more civilian suffering. It aggravates the conflict between States and respective societies, rendering the healing of wounds even more difficult.
Poverty is a calamity that affects millions of lives and has to be overcome in our days. For the EU, the eradication of poverty has been a key priority in its external action. Support provided by the EU has contributed to a global positive trend to put an end to the phenomenon. The global pandemic is challenging this trend. On the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, it is time to reflect on how societies must come together to combat poverty across the globe.
Food is the essence of life and yet it is something that we may take for granted. The COVID-19 global health crisis has made us rethink the things we truly cherish and our most basic needs. One of these is food. Preserving access to safe and nutritious food is an essential part of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, especially for poor and vulnerable communities, hit hardest by the pandemic. The EU is committed to tackle global hunger and contribute to the accomplishment of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 2: ZERO HUNGER
15/10/2020 - Last week, together with Commissioner Janez Lenarčič, I travelled to hand-over anti-COVID-19 material to the African Union Centre for Disease Control; to discuss with our African Union counterparts how to strengthen the EU-AU partnership in a post-pandemic world; and to underscore our support for the on-going reforms in Ethiopia, at a difficult moment.
On 13 October, High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell spoke to the Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation, Sergey Lavrov. They discussed the situations in Nagorno-Karabakh and Belarus, as well as the latest developments regarding the poisoning of Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny and EU-Russia relations more broadly.
The EU welcomes the agreement reached on 10 October on a humanitarian ceasefire between Armenia and Azerbaijan. The EU urges the sides to strictly abide by this agreement and calls on all actors, including external parties, to refrain from any actions that may lead to further casualties. In this respect, we note with extreme concern the reports of continued military activities, including against civilian targets, as well as civilian casualties and urge the sides to ensure full respect of the agreement on the ground.
The EU has been battling for the implementation and respect for human rights, and the global abolition
of death penalty remains a prominent priority. We celebrate the European and World Day against Death
Penalty by reaffirming our strong stand against capital punishment.
Today on the World and European Day Against the Death Penalty, the European Union and the Council of Europe reaffirm their opposition to the use of capital punishment in all circumstances and call for the universal abolition of the death penalty.