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Haupt arrow newsitems arrow EUCommission 1stV.President Timmermans to Eurofora: EU Security/Defense policy can be used in Cyprus

EUCommission 1stV.President Timmermans to Eurofora: EU Security/Defense policy can be used in Cyprus

Geschrieben von ACM
Dienstag, 04 Juli 2017
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*Strasbourg/EU Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/- Experienced 1st vice-President of EU Commission, Frans Timmermans, former Foreign Minister from the Netherlands, speaking to "Eurofora" Today in EU Parliament, said that EU can play a Role also in order to Help UnBlock the Security Issues which (in addition to Human Rights, Governance, etc), are a crucial Challenge in front of an eventual International Agreement for the Solution Cyprus' issue and the peaceful ReUnification of the island, currently Negotiated, under UN auspices, at Crans Montana (Switzerland).


Timmermans was Representing the EU, Together with High Representative for External Action Federica Mogerini, a former Foreign Minister of Italy, in the UN-sponsored Multilateral Top Political Conference on Cyprus, which resumed recently there, with the Participation of Top Political representatives from Cyprus, Greece, Turkey and the UK, etc., under the supervision of UN Security Council's members.

 - "Yes, I was in Switzerland for Cyprus, and I should go back there, but I don't know yet exactly when, Replied Timmermans in relevant "Eurofora"s Questions, Today Afternoon, i.e. shortly Before it was anounced, later this Evening, that the New UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, would also Return at Crans-Montana apparently on Thursday, July 6.
 
+ Questioned by "Eurofora" about his Feeling on how these UN Cyprus' Talks are evolving until now, Timmermans appeared quite Sober, pointing at UnCertainties to lift :

- "I don't know : One Day I am Optimistic", but "anOther Day I am Less !..", Replied EU Commission's 1st vice-President, apparently noting the notorious Turkish Govenment's insistance to Ask, in addition to Keeping several of its Troops which Occupy the Northern part of Cyprus since the 1974 Invasion, even a Claim for Unilateral Military Interventions also in the Future :


I.e. something which was already a main cause for a "Sine Die" Postponement of UNO's Cyprus Talks since back on January 2017, and reportedly Risks, even Today, to Block them again, since Cyprus, Greece, and Many EU and Other States consider Unacceptable and Dangerous to submit a UN + CoE + EU Member State under a Constant Threat to be Invaded anew, at any moment, by the Military of a Foreign Country like Turkey...

=> Therefore, at another "Eurofora" Question about EU's possible Contribution into Solving eventual Security/Defense Issues in EU Member Cyprus, after a possible ReUnification, Timmermans started by a Positive initial observation :


- "Well, there are Elements in Economy...", (something which includes, at least partly, also Greek Cypriot Refugees/Displaced persons' Family Homes and other Private Properties, that they are practicaly Hindered by Ankara's Military to Access, resulting in many Condemnations of Turkey by the ECHR for Violations of Human Rights), "...and in State-Building, that Contribute to Security", he Rightfuly Noted, referring, at first, to certain among EU's traditional competences.


 + - "However, as such, Security Issues are not so much matters for the EU. They are also matters for others" (i.e. UNO's Security Council, etc), Timmermans went on to add. This probably includes Cyprus' President Anastassiades' proposal for UN SC (acting according to its Competences under Chapter 7 of UNO's Charter) to ensure the Security/Defense of a ReUnified Island in the Future. But, if limited only to that, it might also Underestimate EU's own capacities to act, nowadays and in the foreseable Future...


   - "But, you are (also) comming from Brussels, where EU has just spoken even about Defense policy !  Don't you think that something about it could be used here ?", "Eurofora" reacted by asking Timmermans.  


- "Yes. I think that Some of it (i.e. EU's Security/Defense policy), will be there (i.e. on Cyprus)", EU Commission's vice-President concluded Positively in Reply to "Eurofora"s Question.


---------------------------


The Latest EU Summit in Brussels notoriously Decided to Boost EU' Security and Defense policy, (Comp. f.ex. "Eurofora"s NewsReport from BRX: ...), while More is Expected in ths field also by the December 2017 EU Summit, i.e. After the conclusion of the Electoral period of this year in France and Germany.


+ In Addition, concerning EU's Franco-German+ core, by a Timely Coincidence, this Summer 2017, EUROCORPS' Army Headquarters, based in Strasbourg, and Created since 1992/1993 (i.e. during the Historic German Chancellor Helmut Kohl's era, together with Mitterand, then, and developed further afterwards also with Chirac, etc), is due to celebrate its 25th Anniversary, while Spain will hand over its Annual Chairmanship to Germany for the period of September 2017 - August 2018.


EUROCORPS' full Member Countries (France, Germany, Spain, Polland, Belgium and Luxembourg, to which are also Attached, via Liaison Officers f.ex. Italy and Greece, etc., Turkey having a partly similar link via NATO, etc), have already considered, in the Past, as theoreticaly Possible for this Unique European Army Corps to eventualy serve, under UN auspices, inter alia, also for Tasks such as f.ex. Peace-Keeping for the Implementation of an Agreement on Cyprus, (Comp., f.ex., relevant INTW to "Eurofora"s co-Founder, by EUROCORPS' Press Spokesman, published previously at "TCWeekly", etc).


Moreover, "Eurofora" witnessed personaly, last Saturday, on the occasion of a PanEuropean/International Top Political Gathering at EU Parliament for the Memorial Ceremony in honor of Historic German Chancellor Helmut Kohl (Comp. f.ex. : ...) that New US President Don Trump's Director of National Intelligence (DNI), Dan Coats, was present in Strasbourg, at the Same Time and Building with Germany's super-Minister of Interior, De Maizières, a Merkel-faithful and close ally (initialy Head of her Chancellorship's Administration), even if the venue of the latter here had Not been Scheduled.


Such exceptional Key Contacts could have been used, naturaly, also in view of the forthcoming G20 Summit in Hambourg (Northern Germany) Later this Week, but Cyprus' UN related issue's developments are the only ones which have had several UnExpected U-Turns...


German Chancellor Angie Merkel has just concluded a Keynote Speech, in EU Parliament in Strasbourg, by stressing that "Now, it's up to us, to uphold (the) Legacy" of Helmut Kohl, World-Famous Father of Germany's and Europe's ReUnification, as well as of EUROCORPS (Comp. Supra).
And Both Merkel (Germany) as well as New French President Macron, met and discussed also here, in Strasbourg, with Prime Minister Medvedev from Russia, a key UN Security Council Permanent Member, traditionaly experienced and keen on Cyprus' issue.


UNO's Security Council is currently Chaired by China, during this July 2017.


By another Timely "coincidence", China's President Xi Jiping, just after visiting Russia, is currently paying an official visit to Berlin, to meet German Chancellor Merkel at the Eve of the forthcoming "G20" Summit in Hambourg.


China will be succeeded by Egypt, in UN SC's rotating Presidency, Next Month, on August 2017, followed by neighbouring Ethopia on September, and 2 EU Member Countries : France and Italy, on October and November, respectively, concluding by Japan, on December 2017 : Most of these Countries being also Participants at the forthcoming "G20" Summit, Later this Week in Germany, where their Heads of State/Government will meet precisely at the Aftermath of UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres' reported Trip Back to Crans - Montana (Switzerland), on Thursday, 6 July, for the UN-sponsored Top Political Conference on Cyprus' issue, (i.e. just before flying, during the Next 2 Days for the "G20" Summit in Hambourg (Germany), on Friday-Saturday, July 7 + 8, 2017.


I.e., this time, UN - sponsored Multilateral Negotiations on Cyprus' issue, have been inserted in an exceptionaly Dense Top Diplomatic Agenda, from Last Week's EU Summit in Brussels (where it was Discussed on the Sidelines, including with several Bilateral Meetings), Followed by last Saturday's European Ceremony in Memory of Helmut Kohl in Strasbourg, (with the Participation of more than 190 Heads of State/Government, Key Ministers, MEPs, etc : Comp. ...), and Concluding by that forthcoming "G20" Summit, (Comp. Supra).


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Recent developments proved that Europe can suceed to overcome challenges by aiming at great objectives, and this is needed also in 2009, said EU chairman, French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

    - "It's in the name of Great Ideas, Projects, Ambition and Ideals, that EU can overcome" challenges, stressed Sarkozy at EU Parliament in Strasbourg, in conclusion of a dense 7 months EU Chairmanship. "It's even easier for Europe to have Great projects, able to overcome national egoism, instead of limiting itself only to small projects" (unable to do alike), he observed.     

- "Europe must remain Ambitious and understand that the World needs her to take Decisions". "The World needs a Strong Europe", which "thinks on its own, has convictions, its own responses, its imagination" : "A Europe which does not limit itself into following" others, (as it did in the Past, when it followed USA, f.ex. on Bosnia). On the contrary, "Europe should undertake its own responsibilities", he said, after a series of succes in stopping the War between Russia and Georgia, and organizing the 1st EuroZone's Summit in Paris, which incited the Washington DC G-20 Summit to extend similar decisions World-wide.  


    - "When you sweep it all under the carpet, prepare yourself for hard tomorrows", he warned. "What hinders decisions is the lack of Courage and Will, the fading away of Ideals", he stressed before EU Parliament's 2008 debate on Human Rights and Sakharov prize on Freedom of thought attributed by MEPs to Chinese cyber-dissident Hu Jia, followed by an EU - Turkey meeting on Friday.

    - "I don't abandon my convictions" and "I will take initiatives" on EU level also in 2009, Sarkozy announced later. "France will not stop having convictions and taking initiatives" on Europe. + "It's an Error to wish to pass over the Heads of those who are elected in their Countries" : "It's an integrism I always fought against"', he warned.
---------------------
French EU Presidency faced 4 unexpected Crisis :

- An institutional crisis, with the Irish "No" to EU Lisbon Treaty, just before it started. A geopolitical crisis, wth the threat of War between Russia and Georgia risking to throw Europe back to Cold-war divisions, on August. A World-wide Financial and Economic crisis, arriving at a bad moment before crucial 2009 EU elections. And even a Strasbourg's mini-crisis, with EU Parliament's roof curiously falling down, from unknown reasons, in a brand new building on August, provoking an unprecedented transfert of the 2 September Plenary Sessions...

But it wasn't enough to stop Sarkozy ! On the contrary, it stimulated him...
---------------------------------------

- "The better way to deal with the recent problems of EU institutions (as the "3 NO" by France, the Netherlands and Ireland) is to take them as a "Test" in order to find solutions closer to Citizens' concerns", said later in Strasbourg Sarkozy's new choice as Ministe for EU affairs, Bruno Le Maire.

- On the Institutional front, Sarkozy gave Time to the Irish to think about it, and stroke on December a deal including a New Referendum after the June 2009 EU Elections, in exchange of a promise to keep the rule of "one EU Commissioner for each EU Member Country", and some opt-outs on Defence and Fiscal EU policies, Abortion, etc. If the Irish get a "Yes" Majority, then the institutional package could be completed in 2010 or 2011 on the occasion of Croatia's probable EU accession.

He was accused in Strasbourg to upgrade EU Council and downgrade EU Commision, but he replied that "strong Political initiatives by EU Council reinforce also the more technical role of EU Commission, under the political-technical leadership of its President", all 3 "working together with EU Parliament".


- But, meanwhile, Sarkozy energetically spearheaded an Historic 1st Summit of EuroZone's 15 Heads of State and Government at EU's core, exceptionally enlarged to a partial participation of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, on October 12 in Paris' Elysee palace, which started to tackle succesfully the growing world Financial crisis.

    It also paved the way for its endorsement by a subsequent Brussels' 27 EU Member States' gathering, before it all come to Washington's G-20 Summit. And "Europe was united, it asked for the 1st G-20 Summit, and it will also organise the next G-20 Summit on April in London", he observed.   

 But a Conference with EU, Russia, African and other Developing Countries, hosted in Strasbourg shortly after Washington G-20 Summit by the French EU Presidency, took a Resolution asking to enlarge participation to Global Economic Governance. Many found, indeed, illogic and unacceptable that f.ex. states as Turkey were given a seat at G-20 level, while all African Countries, and even the African Union itself, representing the greatest Continent on Earth, were excluded...


    Meanwhile, even USA''s "Paulson No 3" Plan, was, in fact, inspired by Europe's No 1 Plan", Sarkozy observed, largelly applauded by MEPs.

    And "Europe showed Solidarity" by mobilizing some 22 Billion credit for Hungary, 1,7 billion for Ukraine, as we do nowadays for Baltic States, etc., he added.

    The move on Economy was extended on December by an EU stimulus' plan totalling some 200 billion Euros, including 5 Billions released by EU Commission for big Projects, as well as various parallel National plans for Economic revival, (fex. 26 billions in France alone). They might appear limited, compared to USA President-elect Obama's reported plan to boost the American economy with 800 billion $, but at least succeded to overcome Europe's divisions for the first time on Economic governance, opening new horizons.

- The French President stressed even harder the unique role of an active EU Council's chairmanship, when he moved swiftly and efficiently, at the beginning of August, to succesfully stop War between Russia and Georgia, at the last minute, which threatened to bring Europe back to Cold War division.

"We (EU) also wanted to avoid a situation like in Bosnia, in the Past, when EU was absent, so that our American friends took their responsibilitues, and EU only followed", despite the fact that the conflict took place in Europe. Now, it was the EU who took its responsibilities".

A roadmap towards a new PanEuropean Security policy, before which all unilateral moves to place new Missiles (from USA or Russia) would be freezed, was proposed by Sarkozy after a meeting with Russian president Medvedev, at the eve of Washington DC's G-20 Summit.

Ukraine's "European" character was stressed at a Sarkozy - Jushenko Summit, September in Paris, while EU adopted on December an "Eastern policy", in which, "I'm convinced that our (EU's) future is to find with our Neighbours the conditions for Economic Development. Peace and Security, by explaining them that.. they must respect (Human Rights') Values, and adopt behaviors different from the Past", explained Sarkozy in Strasbourg.

Meanwhile, the "Union for the Mediterranean" was created, since July's Summit if 45 Heads of State and Government in Paris, as "an organisation for a permanent Dialogue, that we need", mainly in order to tackle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, by bringing together, for the 1st time, Israelis and Arabs, where "Europe must be present, in order to avoid a frontal clash".

- "If Europe doesn't take its part for Peace in the Middle-East, nobody else will do that in our place", Sarkozy stressed.
-----------------------
    Meanwhile, other EU Agreements were brokered during the French EU Presidency on Immigration, (fex. common Asylum rules, etc), and Climat- Energy :

    - On Climat-Energy, the 2007 German EU Presidency had fixed a triple 20% aim for 2020 (20% renewable Energies, 20% reduction of CO2 emmission, 20% energy efficience/economies), and the 2008 French EU Presidecny realized that, making the necessary compromises in order to modernize EU's industry, but without throwing some former Central-Eastern European Countries into abrupt Economic break down risking "social explosion".

    - Defence-Security EU policy was mainly postponed for April 2009, since both German chancellor Merkel and French president Sarkozy want to strike a deal with the new American president Obama in Strasbourg's NATO Summit.

    However, with all these 4 unexpected Crisis diverting attention to other urgencies, People wil wonder now, what happened to the famous deal proposed by freshly-elected French President Sarkozy on Turkey's controversial EU bid, back on August 2007, to continue EU - Turkey negotiations, but on the double condition that core chapters, intrinsequally linked with EU Membership, will be excluded, and that a collective Reflexion and Debate on Europe's future would start before the end of 2008.

    It was meant to reply to the crucial question : What kind of Europe do we want in 10 or 20 Years from now : A large Market, or a Political Europe, with a popular identity ? In Sarkozy's thinking, presented in his 2 landmark speeches on Europe in Strasbourg, shortly before and after the 2007 Elections, (on February and July 2007), Turkey's controversial EU bid would be incompatible with the second choice.

    It's true that EU Commision's Chairman, Jose Barroso, (who had notoriously declared, as former Portuguese Prime Minister, that he found "nonsense" the idea that Europe might become equal to the US), had repeatedly tried to avoid that Sarkozy's criticism on Turkey might start winning a larger audience in Europe, preferring a discrete "wismens' committee" work. And that most of the personalities later chosen in order to participate in a Committee on Europe's Future, are too much linked with Socialist parties and/or American policies, to be really critical of USA's notorious wish to impose Turkey to the EU, as Sarkozy had noted himself since March 2007..

     - "It's on EU Council's presidency to take political initiatives. EU Commission has other competences", stressed Sarkozy. The "European Ideal" is to "build Europe with the States, not against them". "Ask Europeans to chose between their countries and Europe won't work. You don't choose between your two parents : We must add them together".

    "France and Germany have an Historic Duty to work together, precisely because of what happened to the Past. We have to work hand by hand. We cannot be separated.It goes beyond me and Mrs Merkel today, Mr Schroeder and Mr. Chirac yesterday. It's not a choice, it's a duty to Europe and to the World".  "We need Germany, as Germany needs Europe". Compromise is inevitable, here as everywhere, and each one made some steps towards eachother's positions.

    But "it's true that Mrs Merkel didn't chose her Socialist partners, while I chose mine", Sarkozy said, in an indirect hint that the Socialist Minister of Finance in Germany might be a cause of minor past disagreements in Economy, which were overcome in recent negotiations.

    "We (France and Germany) have particular duties in Europe", but "in a Europe of 27 Member States, it's not enough for France and Germany to agree between them.

    "I always thought that Great Britain has a special role to play in Europe. ... Now, everybody "saw what it cost payed the UK for having been too exclusively open towards the US (and) Financial services. Europe needs the UK, but also the UK needs Europe" :- "We were able to face the hardest moment of the Financial crisis because the UK clearly chose Europe", stressed Sarkozy, reminding Gordon Brown's exceptional participation to the Historic 1st Heads of State/Government Summit of EuroZone, October 12 in Paris (See EuroFora's Reportage from Elysee Palace then).

     - "Some look at Europe with old glasses aged 30 years ago. While we must look at her in relation to what it will be in 30 years" in the Future, Sarkozy concluded.

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