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[PIO] Participation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs in the EU General Affairs Council


Foreign Minister Dr Konstantinos Kombos participated in the proceedings of the EU General Affairs Council held today in Brussels.

The main points discussed by the '27' were the preparation of the Spring European Council, the European Semester 2023, EU-UK relations and the Annual Rule of Law Dialogue.

During the discussion on the preparation of the European Council to be held on 23 and 24 March, Ministers exchanged views on the main issues expected to be addressed by the leaders, in particular, developments in relation to Ukraine, competitiveness, energy and migration. In his intervention, Dr. Kombos reiterated Cyprus' commitment to support Ukraine, noting that the issue of circumvention of sanctions by third countries must be addressed urgently and decisively. On energy issues, he noted that the high cost of energy is an issue of primary importance for the protection of consumers and our businesses. In this context, he stressed that Cyprus welcomes efforts aimed at enhancing the stability and predictability of energy costs, taking into account the specificities of Member States that are not interconnected to the EU energy network.

The Minister referred to the Action Plan on Migration for the Eastern Mediterranean, a project of particular importance for Cyprus. In conclusion, he informed about the intention of the President of the Republic Mr. Nicos Christodoulides to inform the European leaders about his initiative to resume negotiations for the settlement of the Cyprus problem, on the basis of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the acquis communautaire. In this context, he stressed that emphasis will be placed on the highly enhanced role of the EU in this effort.

In the margins of the Council, Dr. Kombos had a series of contacts with his European counterparts, while he had separate meetings with Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Olivér Várhelyi, Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms Elisa Ferreira and Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Stella Kyriakidou. Dr Kombos also had a formal meeting with the President of the European Parliament, Ms Roberta Metsola, and met with Cypriot MEPs.

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