UfM Secretariat intensifies consultations with EU institutions to reinforce Euro-Mediterranean regional cooperation
• A delegation from the UfM Secretariat exchanged views with EU Commissioners and Parliamentarians in Strasbourg on the margin of the plenary session regarding the key role of the UfM in the ongoing European Neighbourghood Policy (ENP) review.
• UfM Secretary General Fathallah Sijilmassi held talks with EU Commissioners, Chairs of Committees of the European Parliament, chairpersons for delegations and heads of the main EU political parties.
Strasbourg, 12 February 2015. A high-level delegation from the UfM Secretariat, led by its Secretary General Fathallah Sijilmassi, held talks with EU parliamentarians and EU Commissioners on the margin of the plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg to reinforce Euro-Mediterranean regional cooperation.
After the meeting on Tuesday with Federica Mogherini, High Representative of the EU Foreign Affairs and Vice-President of the EU Commission, Secretary General Sijilmassi held talks yesterday with Johannes Hahn, EU Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, and Cecilia Malmstrom, EU Commissioner for Trade. He presented the main achievements of the Secretariat and highlighted the organisation’s prospective work. They further discussed the key role of the UFM within the framework of the ENP review, as well as existing challenges and opportunities in the Euro-Mediterranean cooperation.
These topics were also widely discussed with the chairs and vice chairs of Committees of the European Parliament including Elmar Brok, Chair of the Committee on Foreign Affairs; Jean Arthuis, Chair of the Committee on Budgets; Claude Moraes, Chair of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Iratxe García, Chair of the Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality and Gilles Pargneux, Vice Chair of the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety.
The UfM delegation, which also included Deputy Secretary General Delphine Borione, Special Representative Anna Terrón and Advisor to the Secretary General, Sudqi Omoush, further exchanged views on the Euro-Mediterranean partnership and the UfM with Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) including Victor Boştinaru, Vice Chair of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats; Philippe Lamberts, Co-Chair of the Green Group; Elena Valenciano, Chair of the Subcommittee on Human Rights; Pier Antonio Panzeri, Chair of the Delegation for relations with the Maghreb; Eduard Kukan, rapporteur for the European Neighbourhood Instrument; Michael Gahler, Chair of the delegation for relations with the Pan-African Parliament; Mariya Gabriel, Vice Chair of the European People’s Party; Tokia Saïfi, Vice chair of the European People’s Party Mediterranean Working Group; Vincent Peillon, member of the UfM Parliamentary Assembly and member of the Delegation for relations with the Maghreb; Inés Ayala, member of the Committee on Budgetary Control, Lorenzo Cesa, Member of Foreign Affairs Committee and member of the Mashreq delegation; and Massimiliano Salini, Member of the Transport Committee.
The ongoing review process of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP), along with the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Barcelona Process this year, provides an opportunity to further enhance the role of the Union for the Mediterranean as a key institution for inclusive dialogue and regional platform in order to deal with existing challenges and opportunities the region.