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Monday 24.04.2017 | Name days: Nameda, Visvaldis, Ritvaldis
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Minister: it’s in Europe’s interest to support security of its Eastern neighbours

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU«Enhancement of the European Union and its member states’ security should be made the most important strategy in foreign and security policy. More political attention and more resources should be allocated to Europe’s security. It is also important to improve the capabilities of the European Union and NATO to prevent hybrid war threats,» – believes Latvian Foreign Affairs Minister Edgars Rinkevics.

On Monday, 23 May, Rinkevics took part in the meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Ministers Council in Brussels. During the meeting, ministers discussed the regional strategy for Iraq, Syria, ISIS/Da’esh threats, EU global foreign and security policy strategy, as well as external aspects of migration.

The minister expressed confidence that USA is Europe’s most important strategic partner and ally for global challenges. Rinkevics also emphasized that it is in EU’s security interest to contribute to the stability and welfare in eastern and southern neighbouring regions and provide support to eastern partners, as reported by Foreign Affairs Ministry.

The Foreign Affairs Minister also thanked EU member states and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini for her support to help Latvia join OECD.

The minister also took part in the 7th Eastern Partnership Foreign Affairs Ministers meeting. As part of ministers’ work session, there was a discussion about opportunities to enhance cooperation with partners following the most recent Riga’s Eastern Partnership Summit.

Rinkevics expressed confidence that Eastern Partnership will be considered successful once citizens of partner states feel tangible benefits. With that, it is important to ensure continuity of the Eastern Partnership and support member states. «Citizens of Eastern Partnership should feel practical benefits from cooperation with the European Union. This is why in order to introduce deeper and more comprehensive free trade zones, liberalization of visas, closer cooperation between sectors, appropriate decisions from the European Union are necessary. I call for an expansion of cooperation in transport, energy, trade, health and digital field. It is also important to enhance cooperation and support to the reform process, enhancing the involvement of society and development of strategic communication capabilities,» – said Rinkevics.

In his speech, the minister emphasized once of the contributions made by Latvia’s presidency in the EU Council – constructive cooperation with Belarus. At the same time, Rinkevics asked Belarus to establish a moratorium on death penalty.

The minister also emphasized the necessity to begin talks about agreements with Azerbaijan and Armenia.

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