In 1999, the EU’s Member States decided to create a common European policy on security and defence. European security and defence has now turned 20 and much progress has been achieved, in particular over the past few years. In a rapidly changing world, the EU and its Member States are actively engaged to provide stability in our neighbourhood and security within our borders. Work continues and is needed to consolidate this progress.
This is a key year for International Humanitarian Law, as 2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the Geneva Conventions. As the risk humanitarian workers face continues to increase, the European Union pays tribute to the commitment of those who risk their lives to deliver humanitarian aid worldwide.
On the eve of a possible agreement to end the war in Afghanistan, more than 60 people lost their lives and more than 150 were wounded in an attack targeting a wedding ceremony in Kabul. What should have been a joyous and festive occasion has been tragically taken away by this act of terror, which again targets the ethnic and religious communities of the Hazara and Shia.
The EU attended today in Khartoum the Ceremony of the Conclusion of Documents on the Transitional Civilian Authority in Sudan. As an expression of strong political support, a number of international partners including the EU signed this transitional agreement as witnesses.
The EU-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration has proven fundamental to provide Sudanese migrant returnees with access to health insurance, to give shelter to elderly migrant returnees in Addis Ababa as well as to help victims of trafficking.
EU High Representative Federica Mogherini stressed the EU's "valuable partnership" with the IOM and other UN agencies during her visit to Niger in July.