The leaders of the European Union will meet with their counterparts from outside the bloc, Thursday and Friday in Prague, to discuss ways to respond to the tragic repercussions of the Russian war in Ukraine, according to what the President of the European Council Charles Michel announced.
“In a few days we meet in Prague for two important events: the first meeting of the European Political Group on October 6 and the informal meeting of the European Council the next day,” Michel said on Sunday, in an invitation to the European Union leaders.
“We agreed to launch the European Political Group with the aim of bringing the countries of the continent closer,” he added. Leaders of 17 countries were invited to participate, namely the United Kingdom, Turkey, the six Western Balkan countries, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, Armenia and Azerbaijan.
“The ambition is to bring together leaders on an equal footing and to promote political dialogue and cooperation on issues of common interest so that we work together to promote security, stability and prosperity throughout Europe,” Michel stressed.
The meeting begins with a plenary session Thursday at 13:00 (11:00 GMT) in Prague Castle, followed by “round tables and bilateral meetings,” according to Michel. He explained that this first meeting of the European political group will conclude with a working dinner, but that “no official written result” is expected from it.
Then the leaders of the 27 European Union countries will meet Friday for an informal summit, during which they will discuss “three urgent and interrelated issues: the Russian war in Ukraine, energy and the economic situation,” according to Michel.
“We will discuss ways to continue providing robust economic, military, political and financial support to Ukraine, for as long as necessary, and we will consider how best to protect our critical infrastructure,” he said.
He stressed that the consultations must “address high prices for households and businesses, support growth and jobs, and protect vulnerable people who suffer the most from high energy bills.”
And Michel considered that “the key will be our ability to remain united and coordinate our political response, in a spirit of solidarity and to defend our common interests.”
By: Farhat Mian