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Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs Giorgos Katrougalos attends a meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council and the EU-Latin America Ministerial Meeting (Brussels, 16-17 July 2018)
The Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs, Giorgos Katrougalos, represented our country at the 16th July meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council, at which there was a discussion of issues concerning the Eastern Partnership and Libya.
Mr. Katrougalos stressed that our country believes it is in the European Union’s interest to have stable and democratic neighbours at a time when democracy is receding on a global level. For this reason, the democratic principle must pervade all of the prior actions of the reforms promoted by the Union.
Responding to criticism from other states of the recently finalized UN Global Compact for Migration, the Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs stated that migration flows are a manifestation of globalization. Consequently, no state can entrench itself, like a fortress, against these global trends, although this doesn’t mean that they should be dealt with fatalistically, as natural phenomena. Relevant policies need to be shaped on an international rather than national level, bearing in mind the framework of rights and international obligations set by the UN, the Council of Europe and the relevant international conventions.
Regarding Libya, Mr. Katrougalos stated that the EU bears a serious share of responsibility for the country’s situation and has corresponding obligations to support the emergence of a legitimatised and thus democratically elected authority with a monopoly on power in this country. In this context, he welcomed the relevant initiatives on the part of the Union’s High Representative, Federica Mogherini.
Today, the Alternate Minister of Foreign Affairs is participating in the European Union’s meeting with the 33 Latin American and Caribbean countries (EU-CELAC), at which topics of discussion included preservation of the multilateral system of diplomatic relations and sustainable development. Mr. Katrougalos referred to the parallel historical courses of Greece and Latin America, noting that the first country to recognize Greek independence was the first independent country of the Caribbean, Haiti. He also underscored that the two regions of the world are facing common challenges, including responding to globalization and climate change. He stressed the fact that, over the past two decades, many Latin American countries have had successes in limiting poverty and mitigating inequalities while Europe is following neoliberal policies in the opposite direction.Mr. Katrougalos also had bilateral meetings with the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Panama, Isabel de Saint Malo Garcia de Alvarado, the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Peru, Nestor Popolizio Bardales, Equador, Jose Valencia, and Bolivia, Ferdando Huanacuni Mamani, and the Cuban Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abelardo Moreno Fernandez, pointing up Greece’s high diplomatic standing in Latin America.