Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 29
The third Eastern Partnership Summit has been held in the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius today.
President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has attended the summit.
President Aliyev, the presidents of other countries and heads of the governments were welcomed by Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, European Council president Herman Van Rompuy, and European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso.
Attended by heads of states and governments of EU member states and Eastern Partnership countries, the Summit was opened by Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite.
Grybauskaite stressed that the documents to be signed within the summit are important in terms of bilateral and multilateral cooperation. While emphasizing that these documents will contribute to the strengthening of relations between our peoples, the Lithuanian president said that a strong political will is required for their implementation.
European Council president Herman Van Rompuy congratulated the presidents of the partner countries with the document signing. Herman Van Rompuy conveyed President Aliyev congratulations in connection with the signing of the agreement on visa regime facilitation between the EU and Azerbaijan. He regarded the signing of this document as an important action which is bringing Azerbaijan closer to the European Union. He added that other documents to be signed with the Eastern Partnership member-states will also contribute to this process.
European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso also conveyed his congratulations on the occasion of the document signing. He regarded the summit as the beginning of a new phase of cooperation.
While welcoming the efforts aimed at the cooperation of the countries with the European Union, José Manuel Barroso reiterated his confidence that the third summit will increase the achievements of the Eastern Partnership program.
After a musical composition, reflecting the spirit of the Eastern Partnership summit, was performed, a document signing ceremony was held.
The Summit then featured a signing ceremony. The European Union and the Republic of Azerbaijan signed an agreement to facilitate visa regime.
The agreement was inked by Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius, and EU Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Stefan Fule.
Then, the summit participants were photographed.
Afterwards, a plenary meeting of the third Eastern Partnership summit started.
President Aliyev attended the meeting.
It should be recalled that the Eastern Partnership, covering six countries, including Azerbaijan, is an initiative of Poland and Sweden aimed at improving the relations with the CIS countries within the EU Neighbourhood Policy.
The first Eastern Partnership Summit was held in the capital of the Czech Republic, Prague, in 2009, while the second was hosted by the Polish capital of Warsaw in 2011. The next summit will be held in the capital of Latvia - Riga in 2015.