Press release 270/2012
16 November 2012
The EU Foreign Affairs Council will convene in Brussels on 19 November. The agenda includes the Middle East peace process, the EU's southern neighbourhood, Ukraine, Mali, the Democratic Republic of Congo and EU relations with Cuba. The council will also briefly discuss the future outlook of EU-US relations after the US elections. Finland will be represented at the meeting by Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja.
As to the Middle East, the Council will discuss the latest developments in Gaza. The Ministers will also discuss the Palestinian draft resolution to the UN General Assembly to become an observer state in the UN.
As to the EU´s southern neighbourhood, the main issue is the current situation in Syria and, especially, the meeting of Syrian opposition groups in Doha 4-11 November, where a decision to form a new coalition of opposition groups was made. Other topics include developments in the Libyan political process and the EU-Arab League Foreign Ministers meeting and meeting of the EU-Egypt Task Force in Cairo on 13-14 November.
The Foreign Ministers will discuss the future relations of the EU and Ukraine and take stock of the situation in the light of the parliamentary elections that took place in Ukraine in the end of October.
Other topics include the serious circumstances in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo and the efforts to solve the crisis. The Ministers will also discuss EU relations with Cuba and the potential to launch negotiations on a cooperation agreement.
In the margins of the Council, Foreign and Defence Ministers will have a joint lunch meeting on the preparations for addressing defence related topics in the European Council next year. Moreover, the Ministers will discuss the situation in Mali and, especially, the planned EU crisis management operation.
Minister Tuomioja will speak in an event of Finland's Permanent Representation to the European Union that is related to a series of lectures about Europe, targeted to Finnish EU officials.
Further information: European Correspondent Tarja Fernández, tel. +358 40 590 9855, Advisor to the Foreign Minister Krista Napola, tel. +358 40 590 7973