BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union and France denied any change in Western policy on Syria on Monday after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said the United States would have to negotiate with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for a political transition there.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Kerry had assured him Washington had not altered its stand on Syria and he made clear Paris believed Assad should not stay in power.
BRUSSELS, March 15 (Reuters) – European Union foreign policy
chief Federica Mogherini wants the EU to consider sending
soldiers to Libya to back up a potential national unity
government but the plan has met with scepticism from EU
governments worried about the risks.
EU foreign ministers meeting in Brussels on Monday will
discuss whether to authorise Mogherini to draw up proposals for
a possible mission to Libya in the event U.N.-brokered talks to
resolve a political crisis there bear fruit.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Even if Iran and six powers can reach a framework nuclear deal by the end of this month, further serious negotiations would be needed to achieve a full agreement by June 30, a senior European diplomat said on Friday.
Iran and the six powers resume talks in Lausanne, Switzerland, next week, in search of an agreement to curb Iran’s most sensitive nuclear activities for at least 10 years in exchange for a gradual end to sanctions on the Islamic Republic.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union leaders are unlikely to reach agreement at their summit next week to prolong economic sanctions on Russia that expire in July, a senior EU official said on Friday.
New sanctions on Russia are also off the table for now because EU governments want to give a chance to a fragile ceasefire in eastern Ukraine.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union leaders are unlikely to tighten sanctions on Russia when they meet next week but will haggle over whether they need to act now to prolong economic sanctions on Russia expiring in July, diplomats said on Thursday.
With an uneasy ceasefire in place in eastern Ukraine, the 28 EU nations see no pressing case to either impose new sanctions on Russia, which they accuse of supporting the Ukrainian separatists, or to relax them.
RIGA (Reuters) – EU foreign ministers showed little appetite on Saturday for stepping up pressure on Russia over Ukraine, preferring to give a fragile ceasefire a chance before deciding whether to apply more sanctions or even to extend existing ones.
Most ministers at an EU meeting in the Latvian capital pinned their hopes on the latest Minsk agreement succeeding and said the EU should only consider tightening sanctions if the ceasefire was seriously violated, such as by a separatist offensive on the Ukrainian port of Mariupol.
RIGA (Reuters) – The European Union might send a team to Libya to monitor a ceasefire or to protect infrastructure if United Nations-backed peace talks lead to a settlement between contending factions, the EU’s head of foreign policy said on Friday.
“We have started discussing possible EU contributions …
to supporting any possible agreement,” Federica Mogherini told a news conference in the Latvian capital of Riga after talks among EU foreign ministers.
RIGA (Reuters) – Commitments offered by Iran in talks with six world powers on its nuclear program do not go far enough and more work needs to be done, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Friday.
Fabius said he had invited U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and the foreign ministers of Germany and Britain to Paris on Saturday to review the state of the Iran nuclear negotiations.
RIGA (Reuters) – The European Union is ready to step up sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine conflict, but the priority is to bolster a fragile ceasefire agreed in Minsk, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said on Friday.
Mogherini, attending a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Latvia, said the need now was to strengthen ceasefire monitors from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), a European rights and security watchdog.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union said on Thursday it had extended a freeze on the assets of ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich and 17 others suspected of stealing from the Ukrainian state.
It will also will lift current sanctions on four people. Diplomats said legal proceedings in Ukraine had not produced enough evidence of their role in misappropriating funds which Kiev’s new leaders allege ran into tens of billions of dollars.