EU parliaments' heads of foreign affairs committees discuss eastern cooperation
A conference among the heads of foreign affairs committees in the EU member countries parliaments will be held today at the Polish Parliament under Poland's chairmanship in the EU, ITAR-TASS reported. The conference will be attended by EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton.
According to the Polish Sejm "the meeting aims at strengthening cooperation with eastern and southern neighbors of the European Union."
"The EU's activity within the "Eastern Partnership," aimed at stabilization and democratization in Europe, expressed its solidarity with European society and countries, where the political transformation process has begun," the Polish parliament report says.
"Cooperation consists of promoting democratic reforms and building modern state structures in partner countries; thus it will strengthen the feasibility of a united Europe."
Officially, the conference opened the day before within a ceremonial dinner organized in honor of Catherine Ashton. Working sessions will be held at the parliament today and Tuesday.
During the conference, Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski will present the state of EU foreign policy during the Polish presidency in the European Union. Discussions over the obligations in the context of Europe's eastern policy will be held by the Sejm Chairman for Foreign Affairs Andrzej Halicki. The situation in North Africa and relating issues unresolved by the EU will be discussed by the Polish Senate Speaker Bogdan Borusewicz and Deputy Secretary General of the European External Action Service of the EU Maciej Popowski.
Within the "Eastern Partnership" initiative, the EU seeks to deepen political and socio-economic integration among six countries: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. Brussels hopes to strengthen bilateral cooperation through the support for reforms, signing association agreements, establishing free trade zones, liberalization of visa regimes to until they are completely abolished, allowing for integration between partner countries to the European Union.