European Union External Action

Stronger Together against COVID-19

In Europe and in the world, all minds are focused on actions to tackle the outbreak of COVID-19 and mitigate the effects of the crisis. The European Union works on all fronts to support these efforts. 

"The coronavirus has not only Europe but the entire global community in its grip and is the world’s common enemy. An enemy we can only defeat with a global approach and cross-border coordination", said EU High Representative Josep Borrell. 

To this aim, the European Union has launched its “Team Europe” package to support partner countries in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic and its consequences. The objective of the “Team Europe” approach is to combine resources from the EU, its Member States, and financial institutions, in particular the European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

The overall figure of the “Team Europe” package reaches almost 36 billion euros.

 

 

EU support - #Team Europe

The support of the European Union focuses on:

  • responding to the immediate health crisis and the resulting humanitarian needs;
  • strengthening health, water and sanitation systems, as well as partner countries’ capacities and preparedness to deal with the pandemic;
  • mitigating the immediate social and economic consequences, including support to the private sector with a focus on Small and Medium-sized Enterprises, and government reforms to reduce poverty.

With medical assistance and economic recovery, the European Union has continued over the last weeks to support the Western Balkans partners to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and provide factual information about the spread of the virus and effective efforts to contain it.

The European Union and international and local NGOs are providing 200,000 face masks, 5,000 litres of hand sanitiser, and 20,000 bars of soap to healthcare workers, vulnerable families, and  rural communities affected by the Covid-19 crisis.  The value of the equipment exceeds USD 200,000.  Today the EU Ambassador Andrew Jacobs and NGO and civil society partners handed over samples of the personal protective equipment to the Mini

From July 23rd to 26th, 2020, six European Union (EU) Heads of Mission (HoMs) in Uganda visited Kanungu, Kasese and Fort Portal in the western part of the country, a major tourist hub, to assess the impact of Covid-19, among other critical challenges affecting the tourism sector in Uganda.

The initiative launched is the localised expression of this global commitment. It is the result of a true partnership between the European Union and Ireland and proof of our utmost commitment to jointly move aid effectiveness from policy to practice in Sierra Leone.

L'Ambassadeur du Portugal à São Tomé-et-Príncipe, M. Luís Gaspar da Silva, et l'Ambassadrice de l'Union européenne, Mme Rosário Bento Pais, représentée pour cet événement par son Attaché de coopération à São Tomé-et-Príncipe, Albert Losseau, vont remettre ce mercredi 29 juillet au Ministre de la Santé, M. Edgar Neves, dans son Ministère, un premier lot d'équipements médicaux composé de protections individuelles, d'équipements de laboratoire et divers médicaments.

Approximately 22,307 people at risk from highly vulnerable neighbourhoods and communities, including children and adolescents, young people, women victims of violence, indigenous and Afro-descendant groups and people with disabilities will benefit from the new project "Children, adolescents, young people and their families resilient to the Covid-19 health emergency in Nicaragua".

O Embaixador de Portugal em São Tomé e Príncipe, Luís Gaspar da Silva, e a Embaixadora da União Europeia, Rosário Bento Pais, representada neste ato pelo Adido para a Cooperação em São Tomé e Príncipe, Albert Losseau, vão proceder à entrega de um primeiro lote com equipamentos de proteção individual, materiais de laboratório e consumíveis médicos, ao Ministro da Saúde, Edgar Neves, no próximo dia 27 de julho, nas instalações do Ministério da Saúde.

On July 23, 2020, the Ambassador of the European Union, Sónia Neto, together with the High Commissioner for the Fight against COVID-19, Dr. Magda Robalo, the Ambassador of Portugal, António Alves de Carvalho, the Ambassador of France, Jean-Louis Zoël and the Spanish Chargé d'affaires a.i., Juan Manuel Lopez Urdiales, will be present at the arrival in Bissau of the first of four European Union Humanitarian Air Bridge Flights organised by Portugal. These flights will carry on board more than 45 tons of medical supplies, worth more than EUR 2 million. The cargo includes medicine, as well as laboratory and personal protection equipment for health professionals, to support Guinea-Bissau's response to COVID-19 in providing the population with better healthcare.

15 million euros will be implemented by the World Food Programme (WFP). It corresponds to an additional support to resources already mobilised by the EU and its Member States to fight the pandemic in the country, by redirecting the portofolio of existing cooperation projects, estimated at about 35 million euros.

To support partner countries in the fight against the coronavirus and its consequences, the European Union has mobilised a “Team Europe” package of over €800 million for the ASEAN region.

On the 10th of July, AFD and the EU have approved the financing in the amount of 1.5 million Euro to support immediate short term measures of the “Covid-19 Action Plan” established by the Maroqand Obod Company, which is Samarkand city leading enterprise in the waste management sector.

The Ambassador and Head of the European Union (EU) Delegation for the Pacific, His Excellency Sujiro Seam handed over Irrigation Systems, Water Tank, Disaster Risk Reduction Kits and Village Development Plans to communities in Labasa and Savusavu, as well as visited EU-funded projects during his visit to the northern division last week.

The coronavirus pandemic is a global crisis that requires a global solution. The EU is mobilising EUR 36 billion globally to end the spread of the virus and reduce its impact on economic and social stability in partner countries. The EU, its Members States and their financial institutions have also combined their resources to support India in the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

The first EU-ASEAN webinar dedicated to High-Performance Computing (HPC) COVID19-related modelling and diagnostic took place on 10 July 2020.

Desde el inicio del impacto de la COVID-19 en Cuba, la Unión Europea prepara un paquete de respuesta para acompañar los esfuerzos nacionales en su enfrentamiento a la pandemia en el país. Así, se ha trabajado en adaptar proyectos y programas de cooperación en curso, sobre todo en el ámbito de la agricultura y el cambio climático, por un total de 1.7 millones de euros; se han contratado dos nuevos proyectos para ser ejecutados por organizaciones de la sociedad civil, por un monto de 2 millones de euros; y se está diseñando una acción integral, a ser implementada por la Organización Panamericana de la Salud (OPS), que cuenta con un presupuesto de 1.5 millones de euros. Además, se está coordinando esta cooperación con el apoyo que los Estados Miembros representados en el país están dando de manera bilateral, así como diseñando posibles acciones conjuntas para los meses venideros, en un esfuerzo común denominado Equipo Europa (Team Europe).

The European Union and the Civic Assistance Committee joined forces to help refugees and migrants in Russia during the coronavirus pandemic in the framework of “The right to self-isolation for refugees and migrants during the outbreak of coronavirus” project, which was launched in early June. Its goal is to provide these vulnerable groups with food, shelter and medical care.

Suva, 7, July 2020 – A new agreement, worth EUR 6 million (Vatu 0.7 billion), was signed today between the European Union (EU) and the Government of the Republic of Vanuatu to improve food and nutrition security of vulnerable populations living in remote and isolated parts of the country. A smaller part of the programme will strengthen the technical capacity of the Government to better coordinate support by development partners.

On 4 July 2020, the Ambassador of the European Union, Head of Delegation Sónia Neto, together with the High Commissioner for the Fight against COVID-19, Dr. Magda Robalo, were present at the arrival in Bissau of a flight with two batches of medical equipment and materials, intended for initiatives financed by the European Union.

Tackling COVID-19 and its consequences requires a mobilisation that goes well beyond medical capacities. National armed forces in the EU have played an important role in helping fellow EU Member States tackle the pandemic. As High Representative Borrell said: “This is European solidarity in action”.

The Border Troops of the State Security Service of the Republic of Uzbekistan are now better equipped to respond to the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. This is thanks to the provision of personal protective equipment in the framework of EU-funded Border Management in Central Asia Programme (BOMCA) , which includes 830 protective suits, 1 000 antiseptic sprays, and 15 000 facemasks. The protective items will be used to reduce the exposure to health risks faced by the frontline border guards responsible for providing control functions at the state border.

The EU and its Member States are joining forces to support Indonesia in response to the coronavirus crisis.

La implementación de este nuevo financiamiento de 15 millones de euros estará a cargo del Programa Mundial de Alimentos (PMA). Se suman a los recursos ya movilizados por la UE y sus Estados Miembros para luchar contra la pandemia en el país, mediante la reorientación de la cartera de proyectos de cooperación existentes, estimados en unos 35 millones de euros.

The European Union (EU) has provided EUR 10 million towards the implementation of the Africa Joint Continental Strategy for COVID-19 Outbreak. The funding is the initial contribution by Team Europe to the continental action against COVID-19.

WeCAPS (Western and Central Africa Port Security) is an European Union project that aims to reinforce the safety and security of ports in West and Central Africa

The coronavirus is a global crisis that requires a global solution. TEAMEUROPE has mobilised EUR 36 billion to halt the spread of the virus and mitigate spill-over effects on economic and social stability in partner countries.

Piracy doesn’t stop with Covid19: Civilian CSDP supports anti-piracy law on the Horn of Africa

EUCAP Somalia advises on an update of the Puntland anti-piracy law that could prevent acts of piracy in the planning stage and protect witnesses. Since its establishment in 2012 the civilian Capacity Building Mission EUCAP mentors and advises Somali counterparts on rebuilding Somalia’s maritime civilian security capacities.

TASHKENT, 22-23 June 2020 – Today, the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), Regional Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) for Central Asia and the Nationwide Movement “Yuksalish” are holding an Expert Discussion on the impact of COVID-19 on access to justice for economic, social and cultural rights (ESC rights) in Uzbekistan and comparative experiences from Europe and Central Asia. The Fifth Expert
Discussion, Access to justice in times of COVID-19, will address issues including access to a lawyer and access to court.

Increased socio-economic stress and confinement at home is a major risk factor for increased violence against women and girls.

Team Europe in Albania

The second part of EU’s assistance to Albania has arrived. As part of the EU global response to the consequences of the COVID19 pandemic, the EU has donated medical equipment to reinforce the country’s health system.

Une action de l’ONG Terre des hommes a permis, à date, de sortir de prison 37 mineurs et de placer les plus vulnérables dans des foyers d’accueil à Conakry, Labé et Nzérékoré. Des réalisations accomplies grâce à un projet financé par l’Union européenne dans le cadre de la riposte contre le COVID-19 en Guinée.

cachalot, sperm whale, Western Indian Ocean

An overview of the research programmes and protection actions implemented in the Western Indian Ocean.

Team Europe in Mexico

Team Europe in Mexico foresees an initial fund of 8 million euros to support the fight against coronavirus and its consequences, with a focus on the most vulnerable.

With a grant from the European Union of USD 1.3 million, five international NGOs have teamed up with local civil society organisations (CSOs) to provide support to the Timorese population, in particular to vulnerable households in eight municipalities

 

Senegal

*All together to combat coronavirus. This is the motto of the campaign that the EU Delegation in Dakar, Senegal, has launched.

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the high-level officials and experts from Central Asia, the European Union and the Italian Ministry for the Environment, Land and Sea (IMELS) discussed further cooperation and coordination of efforts on environment and climate change during the first online meeting of the Coordination Committee of the European Union – Central Asia Working Group on Environment and Climate Change (WGECC) organized by the EU-funded project “European Union – Central Asia Water, Environment and Climate Change Cooperation” (WECOOP).

(L to R): French Ambassador Emmanuelle Blatmann, Ambassador Robert van den dool, EU Head of Delegation and  Swedish Ambassador Hans Henric Lundqvist at Khartoum Airport. Photo by: Ala Kheir

EU Air Bridge to Sudan

Ai ba Futuru” (Trees for the Future) - Partnership for Sustainable Agroforestry (PSAF), a project co-funded by the European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) has distributed 200 food packages to families severely affected by the economic effects of coronavirus.

L’Union européenne, à travers la Cellule d’appui à l’Ordonnateur national du Fonds européen de développement (COFED), soutient une prise en charge optimale et assure aux patients et à leurs proches des soins de qualité avec un montant de 5 millions d’euros alloué à l’Hôpital Saint-Joseph à Kinshasa-Limete, première structure de référence de la riposte à la pandémie pour 7 communes de l’Est de Kinshasa.

As the Greek government has recently taken over the chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, a new set of priorities has been advanced for May-November 2020. The ambition is to set out an effective crisis response in full compliance with the fundamental values of the Council of Europe, human rights, democracy and the rule of law. Other topics such as the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the European Convention on Human Rights or enhanced children protection, youth empowerment and the protection of vulnerable groups’ rights are also featured on the agenda of the new presidency.

Approximately 22.307 people at risk from highly vulnerable neighbourhoods and communities, including children and adolescents, youth, women victims of violence, indigenous and afro-descendant ethnic groups and people with disabilities, will benefit from the new project "Girls, children, adolescents, youth and their families resilient to the health emergency of Covid-19 in Nicaragua".

On 28th of May 2020, within the framework of the European Union Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Centres of Excellence (EU CBRN CoE) Initiative, the CBRN CoE Regional Secretariat for Central Asia, based in Tashkent, Republic of Uzbekistan, and chaired by the Chairman of the State Committee of Industrial Safety of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Mr. Bakhtiyor Gulyamov, held an interactive meeting for the National Focal Points of Central Asia. The event was dedicated to the discussion of the current activities of the the CBRN CoE Regional Secretariat for Central Asia, aimed at supporting partner countries in combating the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as familiarizing participants with the assistance program for the Central Asian region, approved by the European Commission as part of the EU CBRN CoE Initiative.

Although the European Union is one of the most affected regions in the world, it is firmly committed to assist its partner countries in their efforts to meet the urgent health and humanitarian needs caused by COVID-19.

©Flickr/UNMISS

On International Day of UN Peacekeepers we pay tribute to the invaluable work of peacekeepers and honour those who have lost their lives while on duty. The EU works closely with the UN on peacekeeping and civilian, police and military crisis management, to enhance security both inside and outside the EU. The EU and the UN also aim to increase participation of women in peace operations. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the challenges and threats faced by peacekeepers are even greater than ever, as they are not only having to cope with the pandemic, but also with supporting and protecting the people in the countries they are based in.

In a bid to fight the spread of COVID 19, the European Union (EU) in Ghana on Wednesday joined the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) and artists from the Ghana Graffiti Collective, to launch an initiative to use street art and graffiti to create awareness about the virus and also to raise awareness on migration.

The global coronavirus pandemic that has gripped humanity is still ongoing. Its effect is yet to be analysed, but we can already say that this pandemic will be one of the key events of this century. In the past few months, many things have changed and life, work, obligations, and even the most ordinary socialising activities have taken on new forms.

La biodiversité, qu’elle soit terrestre ou marine, qu’il s’agisse de plantes ou d’espèces animales, est indéniablement liée au bien-être des populations et à la santé de la planète. Elle représente notre patrimoine naturel commun que nous devons protéger. L'Union européenne et ses Etats membres agissent pour la protection de la biodiversité à Maurice, à travers plusieurs initiatives, notamment celles de l'AFD et de l'Antenne de la Région Reunion.

Cooperación Unión Europea en Nicaragua Covid19 Coronavirus

En el marco de la iniciativa de solidaridad mundial "Equipo Europa" despliegan colectivamente actividades valoradas en unos 35 millones de euros.

« C’est notre combat »: l’artiste centrafricain Didier Kassai réalise une bande dessinée pour sensibiliser les jeunes sur le #Coronavirus.

EU supports the fight against COVID-19

To support the fight against Covid-19, EUPOL COPPS donated EUR 60,000 worth of protective equipment and sanitiser to the Palestinian Civil Police. EUPOL COPPS is the EU's civilian police and rule of law mission for the Palestinian Territory.

EU COVID-19 RESPONSE IN BOTSWANA

The EU and its Member States, in close coordination with the Government of Botswana, have decided about a COVID-19 response package, to support the national health system, protect and save lives, and counter the socio-economic impact of the pandemic. Only united in an international effort, we will win the battle against the virus.

EU UNICEF anti-COVID cargo TJK

The European Delegation in Tajikistan and UNICEF Tajikistan delivers critical medical supplies to support the Ministry of Health and Social Protection of Republic of Tajikistanin the battle against COVID-19.

São Tomé e Príncipe, 15 de maio de 2020 — Depois da República Centro-Africana, a ponte aérea humanitária lançada pela União Europeia (UE) é implementada em São Tomé e Príncipe para o transporte de uma equipa de 21 trabalhadores humanitários, pessoal médico e técnicos de saúde bem como cerca de 20 toneladas de materiais e equipamentos para combater a propagação do COVID-19 no âmbito da resposta global da UE «Team Europe».

covid-19, Moldova

70 localities in the Republic of Moldova benefit from protective equipment to be used for preventing and combating gender-based and domestic violence, including violence against children, and to help out vulnerable groups. It also aims to provide local and district multidisciplinary teams with protective equipment to respond in a coordinated, effective and prompt manner to cases of violence which represent an increased risk during the COVID-19 pandemic.

covid-19, Moldova

70 localities in the Republic of Moldova benefit from protective equipment to be used for preventing and combating gender-based and domestic violence, including violence against children, and to help out vulnerable groups. It also aims to provide local and district multidisciplinary teams with protective equipment to respond in a coordinated, effective and prompt manner to cases of violence which represent an increased risk during the COVID-19 pandemic.

covid-19, uk

A team of EU-funded researchers in Cambridge University has launched an app that records voice, breathing and coughs – data, which has the potential to assist the development of machine learning algorithms that could make it easier to diagnose COVID-19.

In the ‘Month of Europe’, the official launch of the "Team Europe" package was launched to support the country in the face of the health and economic emergency resulting from the COVID19.

Messages from HR/VP Josep Borrell

We need to build a common strategic culture in Europe. If we agree more on how we see the world and the challenges it contains, it will be easier to agree on what to do about them. Given our different histories, this will take time. It requires many discussions among all involved in the shaping of Europe’s foreign policy, both in Brussels and capitals. We need to understand where each of us is coming from; what worries people and why; but also what we have in common.

Tomorrow, European leaders will discuss the proposal for a new EU budget, also known in our jargon as the “multiannual financial framework (MFF)” for the years 2021-2027. Adding the 750 billion euros of the Next Generation EU instrument makes a considerable change from the initial draft budget presented by the Commission back in 2019.

The coronavirus crisis is creating a more competitive global environment, with confrontation growing faster than cooperation. As EU, we face rougher seas and risk getting caught in the cross-currents of major powers telling us to “pick a side”.

Last Monday, Dr. Tedros, Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO), participated at our videoconference with EU Development Ministers. He took the opportunity to discuss the Covid-19 epidemic and the role played by the WHO.
He also assessed the current state of this pandemic. And it was quite alarming: although Covid-19 seems to be under control in Europe thanks to the large-scale measures taken by the Member States and the Union, this is not yet the case in the rest of the world. With 130,600 new cases detected worldwide on 5 June this year, a new record was set that very day. The situation continues to deteriorate on the American continent, and especially in South America, Dr. Tedros told us.

HRVP Blog on European defence: fighting COVID-19, preparing for the future

The coronavirus pandemic will very likely deteriorate our security environment in the years to come, increasing the need for a stronger European Union security and defence policy, and for a stronger Union in the world.

HRVP Blog on Sahel

The world’s attention is legitimately focused on the global response to the coronavirus crisis. Despite its historic scale and intensity, COVID 19 does not rid us of the many other regional and global challenges we face. Quite the contrary: since it weakens the stability and development efforts of some countries, COVID-19 is an aggravating factor. We must therefore not only maintain our engagement with our partners but strengthen it.

World Press Freedom Day pictoquote

This year, we mark World Press Freedom Day in the midst of a global pandemic. This gives us a special reason to pay tribute to all the journalists and media workers who bring us the news and analyse the world we are in.

A health crisis at the outset, the coronavirus pandemic soon turned into an unprecedented economic and social crisis. In an article published with several European think tanks, I sketch how COVID-19 could magnify three global developments.

It is now more than a month that the corona virus has Europe in its grip. While every day we work flat out to address the crisis in all its aspects, it is good to step back and reflect on what living with COVID19 means, for our daily lives, for Europe, for the wider world and how it will affect our society.

The coronavirus has not only Europe but the entire global community in its grip and is the world’s common enemy. An enemy we can only defeat with a global approach and cross-border coordination. And while we have to mobilise all our resources to fight the virus at home, now is also the time to look beyond our borders, most specifically at our sister continent Africa and the Southern Neighbourhood, as well as at the Western Balkans, the Middle East, and parts of Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. Because solidarity cannot be an empty word and also because for as long as the virus will not be eradicated everywhere, it will remain a threat to all of us.

Tackling the global pandemic requires an unprecedented mobilisation at all levels.

The European Union is doing everything it can to tackle the #coronavirus crisis and its consequences. It is now that we have to demonstrate what European and global solidarity really means. These unprecedented events call for unprecedented international action.

COVID-19 will reshape our world. We don’t yet know when the crisis will end. But we can be sure that by the time it does, our world will look very different. How different will depend on the choices we make today.

Watch my video message on the outbreak and the EU’s response, including our efforts to coordinate the repatriation of thousands of European stranded abroad.

Fighting disinformation on the coronavirus

COVID-19 Disinformation: Remarks by HR/VP Josep Borrell at the European Parliament session on tackling COVID-19 disinformation and the impact on freedom of expression: It is really evident that the virus pandemic has been accompanied by an ‘infodemic’, by a pandemic of disinformation. We have witnessed a wave of false and misleading information, and an exponential increase in targeted influence operations by foreign actors. Read the full remarks

Coronavirus: EU strengthens action to tackle disinformation: The coronavirus pandemic has been accompanied by a massive wave of false and misleading information, attempts by foreign actors to influence domestic debates in the EU, breeding on the fertile ground of people’s most basic anxieties and  the rapidly changing news cycle. Misleading healthcare information, dangerous hoaxes with false claims conspiracy theories and consumer fraud endanger public health. Read the full press release

Tackling Coronavirus Disinformation - Getting the facts right: Read the factsheet

 

 

covid-19

In line with the previous EEAS Special Reports and based on publicly available information, this edition gives an overview of recent developments around COVID-19 related disinformation.

covid-19

As outlined in the earlier reports, disinformation, myths and misinformation continue to proliferate around the world, with potentially harmful consequences for public security, health and effective crisis communications. In this context, it is important to distinguish the very different forms of mis- and disinformation, as well as other forms of information manipulation.

Misinformation and disinformation in the health space are thriving, including on COVID-19. It is important that you rely only on authoritative sources to get updated information on the COVID-19 outbreak.

covid-19

Disinformation and misinformation around COVID-19 continue to proliferate around the world, with potentially harmful consequences for public health and effective crisis communication. In the EU and elsewhere, coordinated disinformation messaging seeks to frame vulnerable minorities as the cause of the pandemic and to fuel distrust in the ability of democratic institutions to deliver effective responses. Some state and state-backed actors seek to exploit the public health crisis to advance geopolitical interests, often by directly challenging the credibility of the European Union and its partners.

Consular support & Repatriation - #WeTakeYouHome

HR/VP Josep Borrell, supported by the European External Action Service, the European Commission and Delegations to the EU around the world, was in the lead to coordinate the work with Member States and help EU travellers stranded in third countries to safely reach their homes. In an unprecedented repatriation effort, the EU has managed to bring home over half a million of its citizens who were affected by coronavirus travel restrictions across the world. Read our factsheet on consular support and repatriation & find out more about the different stories and experiences from EU citizens repatriated thanks to the EU and Member States.

 

High Representative/Vice President Josep Borrell, supported by the EEAS, the Commission and EU Delegations around the world, led the work to strengthen coordination among Member States to help EU citizens who were stranded outside the EU

Airport Gambia

EU Delegation in Banjul, The Gambia, successfully implemented another round of consular coordination and had its thirteenth repatriation flight left Banjul, this time for Stockholm.

11 Member States organised repatriation operations that were specially challenging due to the 7.000 islands of the Philippines archipelago

Two more repatriation flights departing from Banjul International Airport, organised by the Dutch and Spanish governments this time and both operated under the umbrella of the UCPM, brought home a total of 90 and 298 stranded European citizens and residents, respectively.

EU military and civilians together against COVID-19

From the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, the armed forces of EU Member States have played a critical role in fighting the virus – abroad, at home and in European solidarity. They are providing transport and logistic support, building field hospitals in record time, deploying their medical staff, and supporting national authorities and services. The European External Action Service set up a dedicated task force to support these efforts, in particular by facilitating the exchange of information.

The three EU Delegations worked in close cooperation with each other and with France to organize an Air France sweeper flight

The stranded travelers returned home aboard the national carriers of 14 EU Member States and partner countries in a coordinated operation led by the EU Delegation in New Delhi

More than 1.000 EU citizens, who were in Montenegro at the time of the coronavirus epidemic outbreak, have returned to their countries thanks to the committed cooperation of the Government of Montenegro and EU Member State embassies, coordinated by the EU Delegation to Montenegro. Since 17 March, more than 20 flights and trips by road were organised bringing EU citizens safely back home.

Stranded European Union citizens left Nairobi on Thursday in a special Ethiopian Airways flight to Frankfurt via Addis, organised by the EU Delegation to Kenya.

On 22 April, EULEX chartered a plane from Warsaw, Poland to Pristina, Kosovo to bring back 31 Polish police officers from EULEX’s Formed Police Unit. At the same time, EULEX facilitated the cost-free repatriation of twelve Kosovo citizens stranded in Poland and Czechia, following a request by the Kosovo Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Diaspora.

Two chartered flights organized under the EU Civil Protection Mechanism repatriate EU citizens from Barbados and other countries

The COVID-19 outbreak caused the Gambian authorities to close Gambian airspace, and this is when the EUD in Banjul started realising just how many stranded European citizens were in the country. Since, the EUD has been working all hours to help get as many as possible airlifted back to European destinations, and facilitate their onward travel to their homes anywhere in Europe.

A total of 670 Europeans stranded in Venezuela have safely returned to Europe in the last three weeks aboard two flights

Between 23 March and 3 April, a total of ten repatriation flights from Cuba have been organized under the EU Civil Protection Mechanism (UCPM). The repatriation flights have brought home over 1857 EU citizens and around 121 non-EU residents of more than 46 nationalities, including from 25 EU Member States.

The majority of these flights was supported by the European Union Civil Protection Mechanism (UCPM), an instrument designed to enhance the protection of EU citizens in crisis situations.

Concerted efforts by Embassies and Honorary Consuls in collaboration with EU Delegations in Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados, ensured that close to 500 stranded Europeans made it home safely.

covid-19, cabo verde

Nearly a million EU tourists annually visit the small islands of Cabo Verde. Many still came in March, and got "stranded".

covid-19, nepal

Around 6000 Europeans were in Nepal for the March trekking season. Soon after their arrival, the nation went into complete lockdown due to the Corona virus.

covid-19, uganda

Repatriation operations continue as Europeans are returned safely back home from Uganda.

Lithuania repatriated more than 400 EU citizens and several European countries helped Lithuanian citizens to return back home

On March 30th, a plane left Asunción to Frankfurt with approximately 340 european citizens who were stranded in Paraguay after commercial flights to Europe were cancelled and borders closed.

Ce samedi 4 avril, un vol Brussels Airlines spécialement affrété pour le trajet Abidjan-Conakry-Bruxelles a permis de rapatrier 81 ressortissants européens de passage en Côte d’Ivoire, avec à bord beaucoup de citoyens allemands et belges mais aussi des passagers de dix autres Etats de l’UE.

On Sunday evening 5 April, the EU Delegations to Sierra Leone and Liberia facilitated the successful repatriation to Brussels of nearly 250 citizens from the EU, but also from the Schengen area and from the UK.

Today, in a pandemic, all countries are taking steps to return their citizens who are in other countries. 300 Europeans, of which 70 French, returned home in good health after a 14-day quarantine in Uzbekistan.

More than 500 European citizens from more than 20 countries were able to return home, thanks to a joint effort led by Germany and France that included the collaboration of the Delegation of the European Union (EU) in Nicaragua and the coordination with the diplomatic and consular representations of Member States of the EU in the region.

The EU Delegation to Indonesia and the embassies of the EU Member states in Jakarta have been working together on responding to the very acute problem of the thousands of European tourists stranded in the country, especially in Bali.

Three repatriation flights left Buenos Aires to Vienna, Paris and Frankfurt bringing home 1,050 EU citizens.

07/04/20- Suva, Fiji - Nearly 300 Europeans, from the European Union, Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom are on their way home from Fiji, including 183 on a repatriation flight operated by Fiji Airways and chartered by Germany. Others were able to transit back to Europe on flights to Sydney and Los Angeles.

Due to the global crisis caused by Covid 19, many Europeans lost the opportunity to go back to the continent from Guatemala. In response 3 EU Member States (Germany, France, Spain) organized 5 repatriation flights for tourists from their own countries and other European nations

On the 3rd of April, the Dutch Embassy in Accra, Ghana and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs took the lead to evacuate EU stranded tourists and non-residents from Ghana.

Since mid-March, the EU Delegation to Vietnam is liaising with the authorities and is actively supporting and coordinating the member states in the organization of repatriation flights. So far, the EU Civilian Protection Mechanism (UCPM) has facilitated five repatriation flights operated by Austria, Czechia, Germany and Lithuania, for more than 1,500 EU travellers.

Austria asked for financial support under the European Union's Civil Protection Mechanism to transport citizens from Buenos Aires to Vienna

The German Embassy in Bangkok, the Delegation of the European Union to Thailand and diplomatic missions of other EU Member States are working together to bring EU citizens stranded in Thailand back home

covid-19, philippines © NL emb twitter

More than 5,000 tourists were present in the country at the moment of the Coronavirus outbreak.

covid-19, seychelles

Following the establishment of travel restrictions, international airlines serving the route Europe - Seychelles suspended numerous flights. This has left many European citizens stranded.

Thousands of European tourists have managed to safely go back home from the Maldives and Sri Lanka, thanks to joint work of the European Union and its member states.

Press releases

Following the first review under the recommendation on the gradual lifting of the temporary restrictions on non-essential travel into the EU, the Council updated the list of countries for which travel restrictions should be lifted. This list will continue to be reviewed and, as the case may be, updated every two weeks.

The Commission on behalf of the EU has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with North Macedonia to pave the way for the disbursement of €80 million in macro-financial assistance (MFA). This is the first MoU signed as part of €3 billion MFA package that the Commission proposed for ten enlargement and neighbourhood partners to help them limit the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

Today, the Council adopted a regulation which aims to speed up the development and the deployment of a vaccine against COVID-19 in the EU. The act provides for a temporary derogation for clinical trials with such vaccines from the prior environmental risk assessment required in the EU legislation on the deliberate release in the environment and the contained use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

The European Union (EU) has signed three grant agreements worth €5.3 million or IDR 86 billion with European and Indonesian NGOs working in partnership to help Indonesia contain the COVID-19 outbreak and its social and economic consequences.

Depuis son apparition à Wuhan, en Chine, le nouveau coronavirus s’est répandu dans le monde entier. Alors que l’Union européenne et ses États membres luttent encore contre cette maladie sur leur territoire, ils n’en ont pas pour autant mis de côté la solidarité, l’une des valeurs fondatrices de l’Union européenne, essentielle dans ce contexte de pandémie.

The European Union has this week released the final payment of EUR 1,350,000 (NZD 2,350,000) to the Government of Cook Islands as part of its partnership signed with the Government in 2017 to improve wastewater management systems, under the European Development Fund (EDF).

Le 7 juillet 2020, la Délégation de l’Union européenne a remis un lot de matériel de protection contre le COVID19 au Directeur Général de l'Académie Régionale des Sciences et Techniques de la Mer (ARSTM), Monsieur Karim Coulibaly, dans le cadre du projet WeCAPS - Western and Central Africa Port Security.

Today, an EU Humanitarian Air Bridge flight arrived in Mogadishu from Brindisi, Italy, carrying humanitarian and medical supplies provided by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Italian civil society organisations and international NGOs.

July 2, 2020: COVID-19 crisis has adversely affected the economies worldwide, with tourism being the worst affected of all major economic sectors.

Ten thousand COVID-19 tests reach Armenia thanks to the European Union and WHO

H.E. Moon Jae-in, President of the Republic of Korea, H.E. Charles Michel, President of the European Council, and H.E. Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, held a Leaders' meeting via video conference on 30 June 2020. The leaders acknowledged that the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting every country of the world, leading to immense human suffering, putting enormous strains on healthcare and welfare systems, as well as badly hitting economies and putting jobs at risk.

The global pledging summit and concert organised by the Commission and Global Citizen are only one day away. They will bring the world together and mobilise additional funding to develop and universally deploy coronavirus vaccines, tests and treatments.

In a public ceremony held at the Office of the President, “Team Europe,” the European Union (EU) and two of its Member States – France and Germany, in partnership with the International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC) and the Botswana Red Cross Society, handed over critical Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to the Government of Botswana, in support of the country’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Today, the second of two EU Humanitarian Air Bridge flights arrived in Sudan, helping humanitarian workers and essential supplies reach people in need and supporting the coronavirus response in the country. This fully EU-funded Humanitarian Air Bridge flight to Sudan was made possible through a coordinated Team Europe approach, bringing together the European Union, Sweden, France and the Humanitarian Logistics Network.

The ‘Global Goal: Unite For Our Future' campaign launched by the Commission and the international advocacy organisation Global Citizen on 28 May will culminate in a global pledging summit and concert on Saturday 27 June. The aim is to mobilise additional funding to develop and deploy coronavirus vaccines, tests and treatments. Access to vaccines everywhere, for everyone who needs them, will enable the world to overcome this pandemic and avoid another.It will also help rebuild communities impacted by the pandemic in a fair and just way.

As part of the European Union's response to the COVID-19 crisis in Africa, the European Commission has decided to grant €54 million to the Central African Republic to help the government shore up public expenditure negatively affected by the fight against the virus.

European Union countries can now apply for additional funding via the Emergency Support Instrument to transport essential goods, medical teams and patients affected by the coronavirus. This comes in addition to support already available via the EU Civil Protection Mechanism and deliveries of protective equipment through rescEU.

As part of the EU's global coronavirus response, an EU Humanitarian Air Bridge flight will depart on 15 June from Maastricht, Netherlands to Kabul, Afghanistan. The flight will deliver 100 tonnes of life-saving materials to supply EU-funded humanitarian partners. The flight is fully EU funded and is part of ongoing Air Bridge flights to critical areas of the world.

Today the Commission recommends to Schengen Member States and Schengen Associated States to lift internal border controls by 15 June 2020 and to prolong the temporary restriction on non-essential travel into the EU until 30 June 2020; and sets out an approach to progressively lifting the restriction afterwards.

As part of the EU's global response to the coronavirus outbreak, the EU Regional Trust Fund in Response to the Syrian Crisis has mobilised an additional €55 million for refugees from Syria and vulnerable persons in Jordan and Lebanon to fight the pandemic. It will provide critical and targeted support in key areas such as health, water, sanitation and hygiene. The newly adopted package brings the total assistance mobilised through the EU Trust Fund to over €2.2 billion since 2015, doubling the target originally set.

The coronavirus pandemic has been accompanied by a massive wave of false and misleading information, attempts by foreign actors to influence domestic debates in the EU, breeding on the fertile ground of people’s most basic anxieties and the rapidly changing news cycle. Misleading healthcare information, dangerous hoaxes with false claims conspiracy theories and consumer fraud endanger public health.

The coronavirus pandemic has been accompanied by a massive wave of false and misleading information, attempts by foreign actors to influence domestic debates in the EU, breeding on the fertile ground of people’s most basic anxieties and the rapidly changing news cycle. Misleading healthcare information, dangerous hoaxes with false claims conspiracy theories and consumer fraud endanger public health.

Libreville le 9 juin 2020 - L'Alliance Afrique-Europe pour l'investissement durable et l'emploi cherche à exploiter pleinement le potentiel de l'intégration économique et du commerce. Les frontières de l'Afrique jouent un rôle important pour la paix, la stabilité et l'intégration économique régionale en permettant la circulation des personnes et des biens. Elles sont également cruciales dans la lutte contre la traite des êtres humains, le terrorisme et l'immigration clandestine. L'intégration économique et sociale du continent (par exemple, la zone africaine de libre-échange ou la politique africaine de paix et de sécurité) dépend d'une gouvernance efficace des frontières.

The Council approved conclusions on the "Team Europe" package that is part of the EU's global response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Monsieur le Président de la Commission de l’océan Indien,

Messieurs les Ministres et Chefs de délégation,

Monsieur le Secrétaire Général de la Commission de l’océan Indien et son équipe

Mesdames et Messieurs les Officiers Permanents de Liaison,

Mesdames et Messieurs les Membres  du Corps Diplomatique,

Today, the European Commission is announcing a pledge of €300 million to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, for the period 2021–2025. It will help immunise 300 million children around the world and finance vaccine stockpiles to shield against outbreaks of infectious diseases.

In the context of World Oceans Day on 8 June, the Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Mauritius and to the Republic of Seychelles is organising, in collaboration with the French Embassy, the AFD and the local branch of the Région Réunion in Mauritius, a free webinar entitled "Innovation and biodiversity: a blue deal for the Indian Ocean?".

The Council today adopted a decision to provide up to 3 billion euros of macro-financial assistance to ten enlargement and neighbourhood partners to help them cope with the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Today the European Commission announced an additional €50 million in humanitarian aid to help respond to the dramatic increase in humanitarian needs caused by the Coronavirus pandemic globally. The new funding follows increased appeals by humanitarian organisations, including the UN Global Appeal.

Libreville, le 19 mai 2020 - Face à la pandémie du COVID-19, le projet de l’UE « Transport plus sûr des marchandises dangereuses par route et par voie ferrée dans la région de la Façade atlantique africaine » (SECTRANS AAF), mis en œuvre par Expertise France, met à disposition de tous les pays partenaires francophones un module d’apprentissage à distance visant à lutter contre la pandémie COVID-19. Ce projet relevant par ailleurs de l’Initiative des Centres d’Excellence (CdE) pour la réduction des risques nucléaires, radiologiques, biologiques et chimiques (NRBC) fait l’objet d’un partenariat avec le Gabon depuis 2013.

“The coronavirus pandemic is impacting every country and region of the world and every aspect of our lives. The pandemic and its socio-economic consequences are having a disproportionate impact on the rights of persons with disabilities such as in terms of equal access to health care, support services, and education.

Representatives of the EU Member States, the Western Balkans and Turkey, the European Commission and the European Central Bank, as well as representatives of the central banks of the Western Balkans and Turkey[1] met for their annual economic policy dialogue[2]. The dialogue aims at preparing the Western Balkans and Turkey for the future participation in the European Semester.

As part of its emergency support package to tackle the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis, the EU is setting up a temporary instrument to help workers keep their jobs during the crisis.
EU ambassadors today reached a political agreement on SURE, a temporary scheme which can provide up to €100 billion of loans under favourable terms to member states.

A contact tracing and warning app is voluntarily installed and used to warn users if they have been in proximity for a certain duration to a person who reported to have been tested positive of COVID-19.

The EU is reflecting on key lessons and implications that the COVID-19 pandemic presents for its security and defence. The aim is to be ready to confront possible security consequences of the current pandemic and to become better prepared and resilient for the future.

The European Commission has published detailed guidance on how coronavirus-related humanitarian aid can be sent to countries and areas around the world that are subject to EU sanctions.

The European Commission has set up an EU Humanitarian Air Bridge to transport humanitarian workers and emergency supplies for the coronavirus response to some of most critical areas around the world.

EU ambassadors today endorsed a Commission proposal to provide up to 3 billion euros of macro-financial assistance to ten enlargement and neighbourhood partners to help them cope with the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The coronavirus pandemic impacts every country and region of the world and every aspect of our lives. It has reminded us how interconnected we are. Nobody will be safe in any country as long as the pandemic rages in different parts of the world. Respect for all human rights must remain at the heart of fighting the pandemic and supporting the global recovery.

I am very proud and I am relieved that the start of this very important project was so successful. The world showed extraordinary unity for the common good. And Europe has made a significant contribution. We got EUR 7.4 billion today and – the exchange rate is friendly to us – it is more than USD 8 billion. Of these USD 8 billion, ‘team Europe' – that is the European Union and its Member States – contributed more than EUR 4 billion.

On 4 May, High Representative/Vice-President Borrell held a phone call with the Foreign Minister of Uzbekistan, Abdulaziz Kamilov, to discuss the global response to the coronavirus pandemic, the EU’s support to Uzbekistan in respect of this challenge, the EU-Uzbekistan bilateral agenda, and broader regional issues relating to Central Asia.

Following last week's delivery to Italy, more batches of FFP2 protective masks are being distributed this weekend to Spain, Italy and Croatia from rescEU - the first ever common European reserve of medical equipment set up last month to help countries affected by the coronavirus outbreak.

On World Press Freedom Day, we pay tribute to the essential role of journalism in upholding online and offline freedom of expression in democratic societies and fostering transparency and accountability. The COVID-19 crisis has brought the importance of the work of the press into sharp relief. In times of uncertainty, more than ever, access to reliable fact-checked information, that is free from undue interference and influence, is crucial and contributes to a more resilient society. It is a matter of concern that the COVID-19 pandemic is being used in some countries as a pretext for imposing undue restrictions on freedom of the press.

The Council today adopted conclusions stating the EU's determination to stand by the people of South Sudan in their quest for peace and prosperity, and in facing the consequences of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which risks having far-reaching humanitarian and economic consequences on the newfound stability of the country.

Today, the European Commission is proposing €279 million in financial support for Portugal, Spain, Italy and Austria, to provide relief to the population of several regions in these four countries hit by natural disasters in 2019. This funding comes on top of the €800 million for 2020 available under the EU Solidarity Fund.

As the coronavirus pandemic spreads around the world, the European Union and its Member States have observed cyber threats and malicious cyber activities targeting essential operators in Member States and their international partners, including in the healthcare sector. Since the beginning of the pandemic, significant phishing and malware distribution campaigns, scanning activities and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks have been detected, some affecting critical infrastructures that are essential to managing this crisis.

On International Workers Day on 1 May, the EU’s Myan Ku Emergency Cash Fund transfers the first payments to garment workers who have been suspended or terminated due to the impact the COVID-19 crisis has on Myanmar’s garment sector.

Libreville, le 28 avril 2020 – La flambée de maladie liée au COVID 19 est devenue une pandémie mondiale. Elle a tué des dizaines de milliers de personnes, met à rude épreuve les populations touchées, multiplie les demandes de protection sociale, restreint l’activité des entreprises et perturbe les chaînes d’approvisionnement. Elle aura de profondes conséquences, avec de nouveaux besoins au plan humanitaire, sanitaire et socio-économique. L’UE dans une approche de coopération internationale multilatérale s’est fermement engagée à répondre à l’urgence. L'action collective de l'UE au niveau mondial visera principalement à répondre à la crise sanitaire actuelle et aux besoins humanitaires qui en découlent, à renforcer les systèmes de santé, d'approvisionnement en eau et d'assainissement des pays partenaires, ainsi que les capacités de recherche et de préparation de ces pays face à la pandémie, et à atténuer les conséquences socio-économiques de la crise. Pour soutenir ces actions, l'UE apportera aux pays partenaires au niveau mondial un appui financier de plus de 15,6 milliards d'euros provenant de ressources existantes de l'action extérieure.

Sao Tomé, le 28 avril 2020 – La flambée de maladie liée au COVID 19 est devenue une pandémie mondiale. Elle a tué des dizaines de milliers de personnes, met à rude épreuve les populations touchées, multiplie les demandes de protection sociale, restreint l’activité des entreprises et perturbe les chaînes d’approvisionnement. Elle aura de profondes conséquences, avec de nouveaux besoins au plan humanitaire, sanitaire et socio-économique. L’UE dans une approche de coopération internationale multilatérale s’est fermement engagée à répondre à l’urgence. L'action collective de l'UE au niveau mondial visera principalement à répondre à la crise sanitaire actuelle et aux besoins humanitaires qui en découlent, à renforcer les systèmes de santé, d'approvisionnement en eau et d'assainissement des pays partenaires, ainsi que les capacités de recherche et de préparation de ces pays face à la pandémie, et à atténuer les conséquences socio-économiques de la crise. Pour soutenir ces actions, l'UE apportera aux pays partenaires au niveau mondial un appui financier de 15,6 milliards EUR dont 3.25 milliards EUR destinés à l’Afrique provenant de ressources existantes de l'action extérieure.

The European Commission received its first preliminary application for financial support from the EU Solidarity Fund from Italy to address the coronavirus outbreak and its effects. Italy is expected to submit further details in the weeks to come.

The COVID-19 crisis is affecting us all. Countries around the world are struggling with its effects and experiencing an unprecedented negative economic fallout. Lebanon is no exception: the country is coping with the COVID-19 crisis with limited resources and against the backdrop of a preceding financial and economic crisis.

Immunization saves millions of lives every year. This year, the World Immunization Week takes on greater significance than ever since the Covid-19 outbreak reveals what is at stake when communities do not have the protective shield of immunization against an infectious disease.  The global pandemic is a stark reminder of how fast an outbreak can spread without a vaccine to protect people and communities. 

As part of its plan to support partner countries around the globe, the European Union (EU) is mobilising €350 million to fight against the spread of the coronavirus and mitigate the impact of the pandemic on the ASEAN region.

EU Ambassador Luigi Soreca delivered today samples of COVID-19 testing control material to the Institute of Public Health of Albania, the country’s Covid-19 testing authority. The donation is part of the broader EU assistance to Albania to fight COVID-19. The newly-designed control material is being used by laboratories in the EU to check the correct functioning of the coronavirus tests.

The European Union is joining forces with global partners to kick-start a pledging effort – the Coronavirus Global Response – starting on 4 May 2020. The World Health Organization (WHO) and global health organisations have launched a joint call for action to develop fast and equitable access to safe, quality, effective and affordable diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines against coronavirus.

The coronavirus pandemic affects practically every country in the world. Past experiences have shown that even with the availability of effective tools at the world's disposal, some are protected, while others are not. This inequity is unacceptable – all tools to address the pandemic must be available to all.