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Athens News Agency: News in English, 06-03-06

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] Defence minister reports on EU meeting

  • [01] Defence minister reports on EU meeting

    Defence Minister Evangelos Meimerakis on Monday reported on the first day of an informal European Union meeting of his counterparts in Insbruck, Austria.

    The bloc's defence ministers discussed the outlook for further development of Europe's common security and defence policy, debating how the repercussions of major natural disasters across the globe, including tsunamis or earthquakes, may be handed promptly in cooperation with other international parties, Meimarakis said in a statement.

    "The policy has already shown many successes in crisis management, but it needs to improve its performance in publicising those successes, of which the European and world public are unaware," the minister noted.

    Also examined were EU missions with emphasis on the bloc's involvement in the western Balkans, where operations have been conducted in Bosnia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia; and futurely in Kosovo.

    "We believe that the EU's presence there has made a maximum contribution to reinforcing peace, stability and a European orientation in a region that is of direct interest to Greece, and, as a result, our contribution to the stability of Kosovo must be similar," the minister said.

    On the sidelines of the session Meimarakis met the high representative for the EU's common security and defence policy, Javier Solana; NATO secretary general, Jaap de Hoop Scheffer; the defence minister of Cyprus, Kyriakos Mavronikolas; and UK secretary of state for defence, John Reid.

    ON Tuesday, Meimarakis is due to meet France's defence minister, Michelle Alliot-Marie.

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