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The European Union and its Member States continue to be the world's leading provider of Official Development Assistance (ODA) with an overall amount of €75.7 billion in 2017, confirm the newly released figures by the OECD-DAC.

The European Union on Sunday strongly condemned the suspected use of illegal chemical weapons in an attack by the Syrian regime which killed at least 40 civilians in Douma, a suburb of Damascus in the Eastern Ghouta area. The EU has called for an immediate response by the international community.

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Statement by the Spokesperson on the latest attack in Douma, Syria

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EU supports South Africa to boost job creation, small business development and improved governance with €62 million

Today the European Union has announced a package of up to €150 million to support the revitalisation of the Lebanese economy as part of its longstanding commitment to the economic development of Lebanon. This support could generate up to €1.5 billion loans for Lebanon until 2020, on condition that the country's financial institutions identify and propose projects that are bankable and adopt relevant reforms. This package includes up to €50 million in grants funding that could be mobilised in each of the coming three years (2018-2020) to provide technical assistance and ensure a sufficient level of concessionality of loans. High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini said: "The European Union has always been on the side of Lebanon and the Lebanese people. A strong and resilient Lebanon is in our collective interest, in the interest of the entire region. [...] With this new package, the European Union reconfirms its support to the Lebanese economy, […] and encourages the Government to pursue the path of structural reforms it has started to undertake."

The Council has added one person and 21 entities to the list of those subject to restrictive measures against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), transposing into EU law sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council (UNSC) Committee established by UNSC resolution 1718 (2006). These restrictive measures consists of a travel ban and an asset freeze for individuals and an asset freeze for entities. It has also transposed the asset freeze targeting 15 vessels, the port entry ban on 25 vessels and the de-flagging of 12 vessels.

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High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini speaks to the Foreign Minister of Japan Taro Kono

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The EU has deployed an election observation mission to Tunisia ahead of the local elections due on 6 May.

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Statement by the Spokesperson on the attacks on MINUSMA in Mali

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