“Building resilience in countries, institutions and civil societies surrounding us is the first priority when implementing the EU Global Strategy. Stronger interlocutors will make us stronger”, said EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini to MEPs and national MPs in a Foreign Affairs interparliamentary committee meeting on Tuesday morning.
“First step of an implementation plan on security and defence would be to agree on a new level of EU ambition based on building capacities of fragile partners next to us. Stronger interlocutors mainly in East and South, in Africa will make us stronger”, said Ms Mogherini, in a debate on the implementation of the EU Global Strategy on Tuesday morning.
Quizzed by MEPs and Members of the national parliaments on various topics such as the Permanent Structured Cooperation, Nord Stream 2, EU-NATO cooperation, situation in the Middle East, the High Representative replied: “Most questions you put to me, I can ask them back to you. It is not Brussels deciding. All these questions require solid political will”. “From my side, we need the highest level of ambition and the highest pragmatism: there is no more time for speeches but for actions”, she added.
To Members who asked about the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO), the defence mechanism introduced by the Lisbon Treaty, EU foreign policy chief said: “We are entering in a moment of truth for security and defence. Permanent Structured Cooperation is a possibility. It can be used but only if Member States are willing to do so”.
On the latest developments in Turkey, Ms Mogherini replied that “a direct engagement with Turkish authorities and opposition parties is required”. “We have an interest in keeping the channel with Turkey not only open but constructive”, she added.