Wednesday, 20 Feb 2019 - 15 of Adar I, 5779

Despite declared ‘common ground’ on several issues, EU and Arab League unable to issue joint statement

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The two sides had a ‘’frank and constructive’’  exchange on several files, where common ground exists: support to a political transition in Syria, to a two-state solution to the Middle East Peace Process, on ‘’the recognition of Jerrusalem as a future capital of the State of Israel and Palestinr, ’’common efforts to find a way out of the war in Yemen and the conflict in Libya.

BRUSSELS—Despite declared ”common ground” on  several issues, the European Union and the League of Arab States were unable to approve a joint statement at ministerial talks Monday in Brussels, the Associated Press reported.

The meeting of Foreign Ministers of both sides met to prepare for their first ever summit which will take place in Sharm el-Sheik, Egypt,  on Feb 24-25.

After the meeting, EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini said “common ground was there on 90-95 percent of issues.”

“Whatever happens in the Arab World affects Europeans and whatever happens in Europe affects the Arab World,”  Mogherini said. “We have the responsibility of joining forces to find common solutions to common challenges,” she added.

But Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit pointed out that there were “more complications on the European side rather than the Arab side.”

Mogherini replied: “I would say rather the contrary.”

“We are two very complex institutions,” Mogherini commented during the press conference  as no joint declaration followed the meeting. “It is important to have statements, but even more important is to have a clear idea of what to do together,” she said. “What have emerged today are common analyses, common positions, and common ideas on what to do together.”

According to the report, Hungary objected to migration provisions in the statement, but the Europeans also want to avoid being seated around a summit table with Syria or Sudan’s leaders.

The two sides had a ‘’frank and constructive’’  exchange on several files, where common ground exists: support to a political transition in Syria, to a two-state solution to the Middle East Peace Process, on ‘’the recognition of Jerrusalem as a future capital of the State of Israel and Palestinr, ’’common efforts to find a way out of the war in Yemen and the conflict in Libya.

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