by Staff Writers
Brussels (AFP) April 12, 2017
EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini will make her first official visit to Russia this month, with relations strained to breaking point by the Ukraine conflict and the war in Syria.
She will also visit China and India next week, her office said in a statement on Wednesday.
Most attention is likely to focus on her trip to Moscow on April 24, with ties in deep freeze over its support for pro-Russian rebels fighting an insurgency in eastern Ukraine and its 2014 annexation of Crimea.
Adding to tensions, the European Union is pushing for a political solution in Syria without President Bashar al-Assad, Moscow's long-time ally.
The announcement of the trip comes just as US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is in Moscow for talks with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to confront Russia over its support for the Assad regime.
Mogherini will also meet Lavrov to "discuss the most pressing foreign policy issues, in particular the conflict in Syria", the statement from her office said.
They will also discuss the situation in Libya, the Middle East peace process, Iran, Afghanistan and Ukraine, as well as EU-Russia ties.
Mogherini took office in 2014 with a reputation of being sympathetic to Russia when she was Italian foreign minister and said repeatedly she wanted to visit Moscow.
She tried to stabilise relations with Moscow, arguing that Russia was a huge neighbour that the EU had to learn to live with, but the deepening Ukraine crisis prevented any accommodation.
Mogherini will visit China on April 19 to chair the EU-China Strategic Dialogue with top Chinese foreign policy official Yang Jiechi in preparation for an EU-China summit later in Brussels, a statement said.
They will discuss global challenges, such as climate change, as well as regional and security issues, it said.
In India on April 21, Mogherini will hold similar talks with Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj.
Mogherini has led efforts to give the EU a high profile voice on the international stage as a major security player, with the bloc looking to a post-Brexit future.
Washington (AFP) April 11, 2017
US President Donald Trump signed off on Montenegro's accession to NATO Tuesday, removing a potential hurdle to the Balkan nation becoming the alliance's 29th member. "Today, President Donald J. Trump signed the United States instrument of ratification of the Protocol for Montenegro's accession to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)," the White House said in a statement. The dec ... read more
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at SpaceWar.com
Learn about nuclear weapons doctrine and defense at SpaceWar.com
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|