Association Council: European Union and Georgia share the same values

Published in Politics
Tuesday, 06 December 2016 10:05
High Representative and Vice-President of the European Commission Federica Mogherini gave a statement on 2 December following the Association Council between the European Union and Georgia.
During the Council, the EU and Georgia reviewed the implementation of our Association Agreement, discussed economic agenda of the Georgian government, recent parliamentary elections, continued support for the territorial integrity of the country, and visa liberalisation. 
“I can say that we have exchanged views on the enormous progress made in all fields, from politics, the economy and trade to our cooperation in foreign and security policy and the excellent work we carry out together with the foreign minister,” High Representative Mogherini’s said in her statement.
“It is clear we share common values. It is also clear that we share a common agenda, a common interest and a common commitment to making this partnership even stronger in the coming months and years, and to continue Georgia’s political association and economic integration with the EU.”
She confirmed that the EU will continue to support political reforms and an “impressive economic reform agenda”, as well as promote “freedom of media, pluralism, respect for the rule of law and judicial independence”.
High Representative Mogherini also highlighted the impressive results of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Areas agreement: “We have seen very positive trends in trade between the EU and Georgia. I believe this is a good success story for our people both in Georgia and in EU and I would like to congratulate all of us on this initial success, which can grow even bigger and become even more positive for our people and businesses.”

Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu: values of Council of Europe should inspire further reforms in Turkey

Published in World
Thursday, 13 October 2016 10:40

“The Council of Europe has had a significant role in Turkey’s progress in the past 15 years. We will press ahead with our plans for constitutional and institutional reform and will continue to heed the Council of Europe’s recommendations,” said Mevlüt Çavusoglu, Turkey’s Minister for Foreign Affairs.
“Our country has demonstrated its ability to reform itself,” he pointed out, “by introducing numerous mechanisms to protect rights, by making it easier for political parties to expand, by allowing schools to educate people in languages other than Turkish, by stepping up our efforts to combat discrimination, by ratifying the revised Social Charter, by signing up to a whole series of Council of Europe conventions and protocols, enabling us to strengthen democracy and the rule of law.” “By implementing the recommendations of the Parliamentary Assembly, we have managed to open a number of chapters in the European Union negotiation process,” he added.
He also paid tribute to the victims of the attempted coup d’état which took place on 14 and 15 July and to the Turkish citizens “who took to the streets to stop the attempted coup”. “All the political parties, both ruling and opposition parties, came together and rose up to condemn the attempted coup and to reiterate their belief in democracy,” he said, adding that the state of emergency had been introduced in line with the Constitution to eliminate the threat to the country, its institutions and citizens.
“Since the failed coup, we have further strengthened our ties with the Council of Europe. The threat has not gone away, however. Terrorist movements are seeking to destabilize our democracies and undermine our values. We cannot allow terrorists to take control of our lives.”
Referring to the migrant crisis Mr Çavusoglu pointed out that Turkey had taken in more refugees than any other country, 2.7 million people who fled the hostilities. “We are doing our utmost to meet their needs and provide basic services, including health care and education, but everyone should make an effort and share the burden,” he said.
“By the end of the year, we also hope to reach an agreement on the subject of Cyprus, and a status for the island that is acceptable to everyone. In this context, the Council of Europe must play an ever more important role,” he indicated.
“We must press ahead with our efforts to build peace and stability in Europe,” he emphasised, expressing support for the proposal to hold another Council of Europe summit. “Together we can overcome our common problems, by drawing on our common values, and Turkey will continue to play its part in this context,” concluded Mr Çavusoglu.

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