Delegation of the European Union to Vietnam

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Every day we see deepening tensions between the US and China with clashes over a variety of issues. Positions are hardening with advocates of decoupling in the ascendancy in both Washington and Beijing. This US-China strategic rivalry will probably be the dominant organising principle for global politics, regardless who wins the next presidential US elections. In that context, we need to hold our nerve and frame our own EU approach. I would like to reflect here about a few principles that should guide us

The Internet plays a vital role in our lives, which is why we need to protect ourselves against cyber-attacks. Today, the EU imposed its first-ever cyber sanctions, to defend its citizens and companies from cyber threats.

We are celebrating the World Day against Trafficking in Persons, raising awareness for an issue many times invisible, but still present in our societies. The EU has been working on the prevention and fight against human trafficking through its actions on the ground and through the collaboration at local and international levels.

After tough negotiations, EU leaders agreed an ambitiously funded recovery package. With this deal, the EU demonstrates its internal resilience and solidarity. This is vital for European citizens but it also provides the basis for Europe to engage the wider world. Our internal unity determines our external strength.

Water is life. We can survive several days without eating but not without drinking. Water is also the basic ingredient, essential to the production of all kind of food, whether vegetable or animal. This is why the issue of access to fresh water has always been central for humans, and has therefore always been a source of many conflicts. Inherently linked to climate change, economic development and population growth, however, these conflicts are today taking on an increasingly worrying dimension: access to water is becoming one of the main geopolitical issues of our century.

Yesterday, I had the pleasure to host – together with my new EU Special Representative Miroslav Lajcak – President Vucic of Serbia and Prime Minister Hoti of Kosovo for the first physical meeting after twenty months in of the EU-facilitated Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue.

Even at this time of global pandemic, crimes against humanity and war crimes continue to be perpetrated. The EU reiterates its commitment to uphold and defend the principles and values enshrined in the Rome Statute and to support the ICC

On Wednesday, I participated, together with Presidents Charles Michel and Ursula von der Leyen, in the 15th EU-India Summit with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi via VTC. The Summit was originally supposed to take place in person, in Brussels, back in March. Now, 4 months on, the context in which we held the Summit has vastly changed: the covid-19 pandemic has affected us all.

We live in a world increasingly dominated by the strategic rivalry between China and the United States where multilateralism is under siege. We have often stressed that, in this context, Europe must go its own way and be at the forefront of those who want not only to save multilateralism but to strengthen it. 

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